First I want to say I have the highest respect for the Mayor and all he has done for our City. His collaboration with City Council is a major factor why our economy has grown so significantly since he assumed office just over 2 short years ago. This same economic growth, however, is why, as the head of City Council’s Budget Committee, I cannot support his request for an additional $17M a year from your wallets.
When I campaigned for City Council in 2013 and again in 2017, I stated there were two ways to raise revenue – raising taxes and economic growth. I prefer economic growth.
Our economic growth did require a catalyst to get started which is why I supported the Mayor’s call for a $50M a year tax to fix our roads and his additional call for City Government to keep another $6M a year of your tax dollars in TABOR excess funds in 2017 and 2018 for stormwater.
Our economic growth is now in full gear with revenue increases for 2018 over 2017 almost double the $17M the Mayor is requesting. Below is just a highlight of some of the $36,821,716 increase.
This is why I opposed the Mayor’s request for a three-fold increase in the Comcast franchise fee earlier this year (that Council passed anyway) and why I am opposing this $17M a year tax increase.
And for those who fear this is not the end, IT IS NOT. At our annual summit with the Mayor in June 2017, he told Council he also wants to increase the annual payment Utilities pays the City as well as Utilities giving the City a special rate for park watering. If you think your September water bill was high, you can expect an additional increase if these next two wishes pass as you would pick up the tab.
Neither the Comcast franchise fee increase (which Comcast passes directly onto you), nor the increase in Utility payments, nor the park-watering rate requires a vote of the people. This is the only chance you will have to SAY NO against any future tax increase. Please join me as well as two of the other three members of City Council’s Budget Committee in voting NO on Issue 2A.
Colorado Springs City Council