Have you ever read about something happening in Colorado Springs or El Paso County and wondered what the real story was?
Has local government told you there would be a change to your neighborhood, but you didn’t want that change? Who is there to help? SpringsTaxpayers.com, of course.
Now, we need a tiny bit of help ourselves.
Who We Are
We’re the only Colorado Springs and El Paso County government spending watchdog group.
We look into issues many reporters in the media won’t touch. We spend long hours juggling news tips and cries for help. We have to wisely pick and choose what we cover due to limited resources.
We’re barely scratching the surface.
We want to do more. We need to hire additional staff in order to expand the impact we’re having in our community. And we can, with a little help from people like you, the kind of help that won’t ding your budget, but will bring real change to Colorado Springs and El Paso County.
What We Do
We go to the public council, commission and board meetings, or we watch them online. We’re often the only organization publishing those videos (find them on our You Tube channel).
We file the Colorado Open Records Act (CORA) requests, wading through many hundreds of pages when they return. These CORAs help us see how your taxpayer money is being spent. It’s often wasted on things like bike lanes and City Council remodeling projects.
The establishment media doesn’t report that.
We provide original reporting, breaking stories like public meetings being closed to citizens but open to developers. Or, multiple neighborhoods getting re-zoned with very little public process, the $1 land deal, the Scheels Deal and Richard Skorman’s taxpayer funded legal bill, Skorman bullying a citizen (what was in that backpack!?!?).
Our co-founder Rebecca even sued El Paso County herself when they destroyed records they knew we requested. And don’t forget all the bike lanes, road dieting, traffic calming, and unneeded sidewalk and curb repair. There are dozens more examples here.
We talk to citizens on the phone or meet them for coffee, to help them navigate unwanted changes from City bureaucrats and elected public servants. If you see a neighborhood fighting against city hall, odds are we’ve assisted them.
Few people know how to fight for themselves when it comes to opposing the government’s power. We love doing just that.
We watch the local news so you don’t have to, and share the most important stories to taxpayers on our social media pages, and in our weekly newsletter.
We do all of this because someone needs to. And we are those someones. Your tiny check will help keep it going.
We don’t receive grants or have multi-million-dollar large donors funding our operations. Although, if you know such people, please make an introduction!
We keep this work going through the generosity of community members, ordinary Pikes Peak area citizens who see the value in what we are doing.
But the more we do to uncover what’s going on in the City and County, the more we realize how little we are able to cover with just two of us. We can barely scratch the surface. Over the past 4 years, we have seen how important our presence is in Colorado Springs and El Paso County. What would they be getting away with if they knew we weren’t watching?
Where Your Donations Go
This work doesn’t happen for free, but it is happening on a shoestring. We need to compensate ourselves, and we need to bring on more people to help. And we can’t expect others to join us solely as volunteers. This is hard work. It keeps us, and others who might join our team, from doing other work for money. And we all have bills to pay, including those increasing taxes and fees!
We spend an average of $150 per month on CORA requests. We’ve already reached $550 in CORA spending this month, as we can’t turn away neighbors who need our assistance. CORA requests are critical tools to enable us to see what’s going on behind the curtain, and it’s what drives our push for government transparency. We run across enough ideas to spend 10 times that amount.
We spend several hundred dollars a month promoting our posts to area residents on social media —important stories the establishment media won’t touch.
To get our message out, we could easily spend 10 times that amount. With even more, we could educate voters through other digital means, and even through calls and postcards.
How You Can Help
John Heywood said, “Many hands make light work.” We agree. We can’t do this without you, and it will take many more of you on board —in small ways or big ways— for us to continue our work, and to expand our impact.
So, what ways can you help?
You can ask us to investigate a specific issue and sponsor the cost of that investigation. Click here to tell us about your issue, and we can provide you with what it will cost to dig in with CORAs, etc.
Do you like what we’re already doing? Donate here. Many of our supporters choose the monthly donation option, so that we can count on steady revenue each month.
If every newsletter subscriber signed up for $10 per month, we could hire one more person just to focus on the County. If half of our newsletter subscribers signed up for $50 per month, we could hire a second person to pay attention to the boards and commissions, and help with the significant amount of research we do.
If you are in a position to write a larger check each quarter, or each year, contact us here and we will set up a call or a meeting to talk about it.
If you’d like to financially fund a specific project, tell us about it.
You’ve heard the saying that you, “can’t fight city hall.” Yes, you can, and we’re proving it.
Help us keep up this important work!