Long ballot on tap for RFV voters
September 7, 2018
Twelve Roaring Fork Valley ballot measures — including property tax requests from four local fire districts — were officially certified for the midterm election in November, an official said Friday.
But don't panic. Every valley voter won't have to decide each of those 12 questions because individual ballots will depend on where each voter lives, said Kelly McNicholas Kury, Pitkin County elections manager.
Friday was the deadline to submit language for the Nov. 6 ballot.
"I wouldn't say it's a lot," she said. "They won't all be on the same ballot."
Still, this year's ballot will be longer than those in the past two elections because officials expect 13 statewide ballot measures to be certified by Monday compared with just eight in 2016, McNicholas Kury said.
The longest ballot in the Upper Roaring Fork Valley will go to city of Aspen residents, she said. The city certified four separate ballot issues for the November election.
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Leading the pack is a question approved by the Aspen City Council about where Aspen should build new city office space — across from City Hall or across from Rio Grande Park. Another is a question submitted via citizen-sponsored petition that will ask city voters to change the date of municipal elections from May to March.
The final two questions would amend the city's home rule charter process surrounding the issuance of revenue bonds and franchises to allow for those things to be done without voter approval.
Pitkin County certified a question asking to reauthorize the Healthy Community Fund at a higher property tax rate. That fund currently subsidizes much of the county's public health budget, as well as allowing for grants to numerous area nonprofits that benefit community health.
The town of Snowmass Village will ask residents if they want to include an additional 5 percent sales tax on marijuana and marijuana products sold in the town. That would be on top of the 15 percent excise tax and 10 percent sales tax already imposed by the state.
Nearly all voters in the Roaring Fork Valley will have a chance to vote on creating a property tax mill levy to support the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority bus system.
Colorado Mountain College will ask voters to be allowed to adjust its mill levy to maintain revenue lost to a reduced statewide tax rate.
Finally, there are the fire districts, which were front and center this summer thanks to the Lake Christine Fire in the midvalley.
Districts asking voters for more property tax money include the Aspen Fire Protection District, the Snowmass Wildcat Fire Protection District, the Basalt Fire District and two questions concerning the Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District.