Election Guide 2013: Yes on Boulder Ballot Issue 2C


City of Boulder Ballot Question 2C
Sales and Use Tax Extension

Vote Yes

question, the second of the three transportation/open space tax
measures on the ballot, asks voters to continue an open space tax beyond
its expiration in 2018 but gradually decrease the amount of revenue
that goes to open space, diverting it to the general fund instead. This
open space tax, a .33 cent sales and use tax that shouldn’t be confused
with the one addressed in 2B and 2D, would be extended in perpetuity
if 2C passes, but the city’s general fund would start getting a slice
of the pie. From 2019 to 2035, open space would get .22 cents, and the
other .11 cents would go toward general city resources like fire,
police, libraries, parks, recreation and human services. Then, in 2035,
the amount dedicated to open space would dwindle further, to .10 cents
of every dollar taxed. The remaining .23 cents would go to the
aforementioned services and other general-fund purposes.

of 2C say that all of the properties in the current open space
acquisition plan can be purchased with the amount of money set aside in
this measure, even with the decrease in the portion going to the open
space department. They argue that there is only so much land available
to buy, and other areas of the city’s budget, like transportation and
human services, are in more dire need of funding than the open space
department. They say the open space department would continue to be
funded in perpetuity with enough to manage its lands. Opponents say that
acquiring and managing open space should still be one of the city’s
top priorities, and that not only should the tax be extended, but the
full amount should continue to be spent on open space alone. They say
that voters like to know what a particular tax will be used for when
they approve it, as opposed to approving unrestricted spending by
government. Ray Bridge, co-chair of PLAN-Boulder County, said his board
feels that while 2C is far from perfect, the board endorsed it
reluctantly because open space needs continuing funding at some level.

View all of Boulder Weekly’s endorsements here.