On Monday, August 24th, Denver City Council voted unanimously in favor of referring...
Note: this reflects unofficial results reported by Denver Elections Division and Colorado’s Secretary of State as of 11:30 p.m. on Tuesday, November 3rd and 8 a.m on Wednesday, November 4, respectively. Click here for the most up-to-date results in Denver and here for Colorado’s results.
At the Downtown Denver Partnership, we know that elections – no matter the size or scale – have the power to have major impacts on our city. And, we believe it is critically important to cast an educated vote – every time. The November 3, 2020 Election presented Denver voters with 20 state and local ballot measures, in addition to choices on important elected seats such as President of the United States. As of 11 p.m. on November 3rd, a record-breaking 82.5% of Denver voters (Colorado’s voter turnout is currently being reported at just over 78%) had their ballots counted. The next set of election results are scheduled to be reported at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, November 4.
Nearly all the Denver issues presented to Denver voters are expected to pass, including additional funding to address climate change and homelessness, as well as funding for Denver Public Schools. At the State level, voters chose to repeal the Gallagher Amendment of 1982 with the expected passage of Amendment B.
Each election cycle, the Downtown Denver Partnership chooses to take a position on several measures based on alignment with the Partnership’s mission to build an economically healthy, growing and vibrant downtown. This election cycle, the Partnership took positions on eight local and two state ballot measures. These positions and their respective unofficial results are as follows.
- SUPPORTED: Ballot Measure 2A: Climate Action Sales Tax – Expected to pass.
2A establishes a 0.25% sales tax to fund efforts to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution, and to adapt Denver’s communities to climate change.
- SUPPORTED: Ballot Measure 2B: Homelessness Resolution Sales Tax – Expected to pass.
Measure 2B establishes a 0.25% sales tax to fund supportive housing, expanded shelter access, and services for people experiencing homelessness. If passed, 2B is expected to generate roughly $40 million annually; the funds will be managed by Denver’s Department of Housing Stability (HOST).
- SUPPORTED: Ballot Measure 2D: Board of Transportation & Infrastructure – Expected to pass.
Measure 2D establishes an advisory board for the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure (DOTI). The Board would be made up of 19 individuals: one representative for each City Council member and six representatives that would be appointed by the Mayor.
- OPPOSED: Ballot Measure 2E: City Council Confirmation Requirement for Certain Appointees – Expected to pass.
Measure 2E gives Denver City Council the ability to approve or reject certain mayoral appointments — such as the Chief of Police and directors of departments such as parks and recreation, finance, and community planning and development — with a majority vote.
- SUPPORTED: Ballot Measure 2F: City Council Meetings – Expected to pass.
Measure 2F removes outdated language regarding City Council meetings from the charter. If passed, the measure would add greater flexibility in scheduling impromptu meetings of Council (while still giving the public at least 24-hour’s notice). The measure also allows City Council and the Mayor’s office to change other outdated language, such as gender references.
- OPPOSED: Ballot Measure 2G: City Council Authority to Propose Supplemental Budget Changes or Appropriations – Expected to pass.
Measure 2G allows Denver City Council greater power related to the city budget. Currently, Denver City Council approves the city budget in November before each fiscal year begins on January 1. This measure would allow City Council to make amendments throughout the year, a power currently only held by the Mayor.
- SUPPORTED: Ballot Measures 4A & 4B: Denver Public Schools Bond & Bill Levy Package – Expected to pass.
Measures 4A & 4B, also known as Denver Public Schools Bond and Mill Levy proposal, provide $795 million in bond funding to build and maintain schools, and provides $32 million in school-based investments in priority areas such as mental health, nursing, and special education support. 4A will raise $32 million by increasing property taxes in the city in 2021 to give teachers raises and add additional mental health professionals, school nurses, and counselors. 4B will let Denver Public Schools borrow $795 million for capital improvement projects (like school renovations), to provide computers for remote learning, and more.
- SUPPORTED: Amendment B: Repeal of 1982 Gallagher Amendment – Expected to pass.
Amendment B would repeal the Gallagher Amendment of 1982 from Colorado’s Constitution. The Gallagher Amendment requires that 45% of the total share of state property taxes comes from residential property taxes, and 55% of the total share of state property taxes comes from non-residential property taxes. If passed, the measure would prevent automatic cuts to residential property tax rates in the future. Under this measure, funding for schools, rural fire districts and other entities that rely on property taxes would become more reliable.
- SUPPORTED: Proposition EE: Tobacco and E-Cigarette Tax Increase for Health and Education Programs – Expected to pass.
Proposition EE seeks to create a tax on e-cigarettes and other vaping products and
incrementally increase cigarette and tobacco taxes over the next seven years. If passed,
Proposition EE is expected to raise about $82.7 million in fiscal year 2020 – 2021; $167.6 million in fiscal year 2021 – 2022; and more in years to come as tax rates continue to increase under this measure. In the first two and a half years, this measure would provide relief related to state budget cuts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and after that would fund future health and education programs statewide.
At the Downtown Denver Partnership, we know that elections - no matter the size or scale - have the power to have major impacts on our city. And, we believe it is critically important to cast an educated vote - every time. Each election cycle, the Partnership publishes a ballot guide to help you navigate the ballot questions you'll be asked to decide on. Read our ballot guide to learn more about our policy positions and for overviews of each measure that Denver voters will decide on on November 3
On November 5, Denver voters will decide on four local and two state ballot questions. Visit the Denver Elections Division and Colorado's Elections and Voting websites to access important voter resources, including voter registration information, ballot drop locations, sample ballots and more.
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