(This is a scanned document and may not be an exact replication. For the Official Notice, please contact the Park County Clerk.)


PARK COUNTY

 

TABOR NOTICE

QUESTION NO. 1A

PARK COUNTY, COLORADO

 

NOTICE OF ELECTION TO INCREASE TAXES

ON A REFERRED MEASURE

 

Election Date: Tuesday, November 4, 2003

Election Hours: 7:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M.

Local election office address and phone number: 501 Main Street, PO Box 220, Fairplay, CO 80440, 719-836-4333

 

Ballot Title and Text:

REFERENDUM 1A

 

SHALL PARK COUNTY, COLORADO, TAXES BE INCREASED BY $310,000 ANNUALLY (ESTIMATED REVENUES IN THE FIRST YEAR), FOR YEAR 2003 PROPERTY TAXES PAYABLE IN YEAR 2004 AND BY WHATEVER ADDITIONAL AMOUNTS ARE RAISED ANNUALLY IN EACH SUBSEQUENT YEAR, BY THE IMPOSITION OF AN ADDITIONAL MILL LEVY OF ONE (1) MILL, AS AUTHORIZED BY SECTION 27-10.5-104(6), C.R.S., COMMENCING WITH YEAR 2003 PROPERTY TAXES PAYABLE IN 2004, AND CONTINUING THEREAFTER, FOR THE PURPOSES OF PROVIDING AND PURCHASING SERVICES AND SUPPORTS THROUGH A COMMUNITY CENTERED BOARD FOR PERSONS WITH MENTAL RETARDATION (WHICH INCLUDES RELATED DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES), INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION:

 

         PROTECTING AND ASSISTING PEOPLE WITH MENTAL RETARDATION, DEFINED AS CHILDREN AND ADULTS WITH SEVERE LIFE-LONG CONDITIONS SUCH AS DOWN SYNDROME, CEREBRAL PALSY, AND AUTISM, OFTEN ACCOMPANIED BY MAJOR PHYSICAL HANDICAPS;

         AVOIDING COSTLY OUT-OF-HOME PLACEMENTS BY EDUCATING AND ASSISTING FAMILIESTO KEEPTHEIR CHILD OR SIBLING WITH MENTAL RETARDATION IN THE FAMILY HOME;

         HELPING ADULTS WITH MENTAL RETARDATION FIND AND HOLD REGULAR JOBS AND LIVE AS PRODUCTIVE CITIZENS IN THEIR COMMUNITIES;

         PROVIDING DAYCARE AND OTHER SERVICES FOR SENIORS WITH MENTAL RETARDATION SO THAT WORKING FAMILIES CAN CARE FOR THEM AT HOME;

         WORKING INTENSELY WITH INFANTS ANDTODDLERSWITH (OR AT HIGH RISK OF) MENTAL RETARDATION USING METHODS PROVEN TO MINIMIZE FUTURE HANDICAPS AND REDUCE THE COST OF FUTURE CARE;

         REDUCING LONG WAITING LISTS OF CHILDREN AND ADULTS WITH MENTAL RETARDATION WHO NEED SUCH SERVICES AND SUPPORTS;

         ACHIEVING THESE ENDS THROUGH EXISTING COUNTY-AUTHORIZED AGENCIES WITHOUT EXPANDING COUNTY GOVERNMENT;

 

ALL AS A VOTER APPROVED REVENUE CHANGE AND AN EXCEPTION TO THE LIMITS WHICH WOULD OTHERWISE APPLY UNDER ARTICLE X, SECTION 20 OF THE COLORADO CONSTITUTION OR ANY OTHER LAW?

 

Total County Fiscal Year Spending From the General Fund for Services for the Developmentally Disabled:

 

Year

General Fund

Expenditures

2003

$0

2002

$0

2001

$0

2000

$0

1999

$0

Overall percentage change from 1999 to 2003

0%

Overall dollar change from 1999 to 2003

$0

 

County Estimates of Maximum Dollar Amount of Tax Increase and County Fiscal Year Spending Without the Increase for Services for the Developmentally Disabled for the First Full Fiscal Year of Proposed Tax Increase:

 

Estimated Maximum Dollar Amount of Tax Increase for 2004:

$310,000

Estimated 2004 Fiscal Year Spending From General Fund for Services for the Developmentally Disabled Without Proposed Tax Increase:

$0

 

Summary of written comments FOR the proposal:

 

         The money will provide services and supports for children and adults with mental retardation, cerebral palsy, autism and other developmental disabilities.

         The programs funded will help adults with mental retardation find and hold regular jobs and live as productive, taxpaying citizens in their community.

         This measure will help people with mental retardation in ways that help keep families together rather than requiring them to be institutionalized.

         This measure will also provide funding to work intensively with infants and toddlers with mental retardation using methods proven to minimize future handicaps and reduce the cost of future care.

         Intensive early intervention services with children birth to two years old can minimize future disabilities and reduce long-term costs. With early intervention, some children will no longer need services.

         At least 93% of these funds will go directly for services and support, with a maximum of 7% for administration of the program.

         All of the funds will stay in Park County and will be administered by an audited, nongovernmental, local community board accredited by the State.

         The funds will not go to federal or state government or any other counties in Colorado.

         The money raised will be in addition to state and federal funding, not in place of it.

         The funds will provide daycare and other services for adults with mental retardation so that families who work can care for them at home.

         Many senior parents in their 70's and 80's will be able to continue caring for their middle-aged children with mental retardation.

         This will avoid costly out-of-home placements by assisting families to keep their mentally retarded child at home. (Placement outside of the home costs four to ten times as more than keeping mentally retarded children and adults in their home with their families.)

         Less than 1/2 of the people with mental retardation and other developmental disabilities are receiving the help they need.

         Park County currently has a waiting list for services for those with mental retardation, autism, and cerebral palsy.

         9 out of 10 children between the ages of 3 and 18 are on the waiting list for services.

         No new government agency or department is created or expanded by this measure.

         Services will be provided through an extensive network of nonprofit agencies helping people with mental retardation. Instead of expanding government, these services will be provided through public-private partnerships.

         Accountability is assured. Locally, a nonprofit volunteer board of directors made up largely of parents and experienced business people and community leaders will oversee the funds. The State conducts intensive program and financial audits for every service provided by the provider organizations.

 

Summary of written comments AGAINST the proposal:

 

VOTE NO on 1A

 

This new property tax is corporate welfare. The Resource Exchange (TRE) is a privately-owned corporation that seeks a new dedicated property tax.

TRE claims it is charitable, but using the coercive power of government to take property taxes from taxpayers to distribute to another group is not "charity."

TRE, a private corporation, will receive this money with no competitive bidding and no open records requirements. Without competition, taxpayers can expect further tax subsidies for TRE as costs balloon and quality suffers. Will this become a giant financial drain, like the $750,000 annual jail deficits? How does the per person cost compare to other similar private corporations? How many people are served? What is the standard of care? TRE will be more concerned with pleasing Park County government than their clients.

 

Park County should not intervene in private family relationships, which can be supplemented by private charities. State and County taxpayers already provide generous welfare programs. We don't need another failed government program.

 

This new property tax will create a new government funding source that will require oversight from the taxpayers, news media, lawyers, and accountants. It will divert resources from a fully-utilized county government to provide this oversight. Since taxpayer funds will be specifically designated for this private corporation, it will invite public scrutiny and the inevitable bickering and recriminations (witness the fiasco at the Horn Cemetery). VOTE NO on 1A

 

Property tax is a first lien on your property. Increasing property taxes puts more families at risk of delinquency.

 

This new property tax Is forever because voters do not have the right to petition County government to change it. Neither you nor your grandchildren can stop this increase, even if service is poor.

 

In a difficult recession, Park County is expanding the size of government by $310,000 in new property taxes. Because of past poor spending decisions, Park County needs to be more efficient. This is an excellent opportunity for a business or charity to fill this need. Taxpayers can rest assured that if TRE cannot meet the need, other private organizations can. When the County could no longer support recycling several years ago, taxpayers rejected a dedicated property tax for it, and the need has since been funded privately.

 

Raising taxes delays recovery from recession. Taxes have been lowered at the federal and state levels, hastening recovery. This would be undoing those cuts.

 

Park County voters have consistently rejected requests for dedicated property taxes such as this. There are 3 Park County tax and fee increase requests on this ballot. If this dedicated property tax Is approved, taxpayers can expect to see a flood of other special interest groups on future ballots. If this, why not dedicated property taxes for diabetes, heart disease, prescription drugs, libraries, roads, law enforcement, courts, etc. Let's draw the line here.

VOTE NO on 1A.

 


(This is a scanned document and may not be an exact replication. For the Official Notice, please contact the Park County Clerk.)


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