Colorado transportation ballot measures: vote NO on Proposition 109, YES on 110

Written by: Samantha Espinoza
Date Posted: September 28, 2018

The Colorado Children’s Campaign is urging Coloradans to vote NO on Proposition 109 and YES on Proposition 110 because addressing our transportation needs should not endanger the programs and services that support Colorado children and families.

Transportation is a key to every Coloradan’s ability to access what they need to live a healthy and prosperous life. Whether a parent is seeking health care for themselves or their child, dropping their child off at child care or making sure their student gets to school on time, transportation is essential. Reliable transportation is linked to school attendance and positive health outcomes, which makes it critical for Coloradans to invest in how we get around. However, it’s crucial that those investments not jeopardize the health, development, safety or education of Colorado kids.

There will be two transportation initiatives on the ballot this fall, but they are very different. Proposition 109, otherwise known as “Fix Our Damn Roads,” diverts critical investments in Colorado kids to fund roads without raising any new revenue. Without creating a new revenue stream, legislators would be forced to take money from education, health care, and early childhood to fund transportation initiatives. Programs that support child development, like health care, education, and preschool will be among the first on the chopping block when the state budget takes a turn for the worse. Moreover, this approach would support only projects that are limited only to roads and bridges—and without funding for public or multi-modal transportation. We have heard from our visits across the state this fall about the importance of public transit options in linking people in rural areas to jobs and crucial health services. This proposal is not responsive to the needs of Colorado communities.

Proposition 110 is better for Colorado kids and families. It would diversify state transit and give cities and counties the ability to address their unique needs. The proposition would create a new transportation revenue stream by temporarily increasing the state’s sale and use tax 0.62 percent (or 6 cents on a on a $10 purchase). It is expected to raise about $767 million dollars in the first year and would be divided between the state highway fund, multimodal transportation options fund, and local transportation priorities. The multimodal transportation fund includes increasing or improving regional commuter bus routes (also known as Bustang), bike lanes, pedestrian paths and disability services, which we know are often the most affordable means of transportation and would address the needs of more Coloradans than sole investments to bridges and roads.

The conditions in which we live, learn, work, and play affect our health and prosperity. Proposition 110 is a better option for Colorado kids because creates its own revenue stream and funds multimodal transportation, recognizing the diversity of travel needs and the unique and important roles that various modes in an efficient and equitable transport system. Increase accessibility and protect the programs and services that benefit Colorado kids and families, vote NO on Proposition 109 and YES on Proposition 110.

Samantha Espinoza

About Samantha Espinoza

Sam joined the Colorado Children’s Campaign staff as a Policy Analyst after serving as their Government Affairs Intern while completing her MSW at the University of Denver. Her portfolio of policy issues includes child health, family planning and maternal and infant mental health. Sam is a military veteran whose greater part of professional experience is grounded in research, advocacy and supporting children who face adversity. Before moving to Denver to pursue her MSW, Sam graduated from Hawaii Pacific University with her bachelor’s degree in sociology and worked as a tutor, specializing in teaching students with behavioral challenges.