Colorado state Sen. Rollie Heath, D-Boulder, unloaded his tax increase ballot proposal at a press conference at the Capitol today.

The tax increase is, of course, for the kids (i.e., for education, i.e, for teacher salaries and benefits) because Democrats in the state legislature can’t stomach the thought of Gov. Hickenlooper cutting $375 million from K-12 education funding in next year’s proposed budget.

“I don’t believe that our kids can wait,” said Heath, surrounded by other Democratic legislators, including state Sens. Michael Johnston, D-Denver, and Morgan Carroll, D-Aurora. “If there’s a title to this, it’s just that: our kids can’t wait.”

The tax proposal, according to Heath, would roll back income-and-sales tax rates to 1999 levels and would sunset in three years. The total amount to be raised is $1.63 billion.

But listen carefully in the video above to Heath explain how the ballot initiative might work…

“All of that increased revenue according to this initiative will go to K-12 and higher education. That’s to be decided by the General Assembly and by the JBC [Joint Budget Committee] to see it . . . and what is necessary at that particular point in time.”

One way to get Coloradans to vote for changes to our tax system is to make emotional arguments that “It’s for the kids” (see Amendment 23 and Referendum C). Note, though, that Heath’s proposed initiative is actually a general tax increase that will go to the state’s General Fund and that the additional dollars will be allocated by the Joint Budget Committee and the General Assembly.

As anyone who manages a household budget knows, if you have additional dollars coming in and you allocate it for one thing, that frees up money to spend elsewhere. Don’t be fooled by the cries of “It’s for the kids.” This is a $1.63 billion proposed general tax increase to be paid, in part, by the parents of those kids.

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2 Responses to ““Our kids can’t wait” - for another Colorado tax increase”

  1. Raising Taxes–An Act Of Courage On Behalf Of The Children | Hear Us Now! Says:

    [...] phrase that came to mind when I heard about this proposed tax increase via Who Said You Said late last month, was legislative [...]

  2. Left’s view of Hickenlooper: afraid of “a modest tax increase” | Says:

    [...] state Sen. Rollie Heath, D-Boulder, recently proposed a ballot measure that would raise taxes in Colorado by $1.63 billion over three years, purportedly to fund [...]

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