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From a news conference under way now–supporters of Initiative 25, the ballot measure from Sen. Rollie Heath to restore Colorado sales and income tax rates to 1999 levels, plan to submit some 142,000 names to the Secretary of State’s office later today. Well in excess of the campaign’s goal of 125,000 signatures, and nearly double the legal requirement of approximately 86,000, it’s now very likely that a measure to raise the state sales tax from 2.9% to 3.0%, and income tax from 4.63% to 5%, will appear on this November’s statewide ballot.
Release follows. Says Sen. Heath, “By voting yes, Colorado will establish itself as a national leader by reinvesting in our future, our kids, jobs and our economy. It will state loud and clear that we are open for business. That’s the best economic development message we can send.”
Coloradans call for reinvestment in education as Initiative 25 supporters submit petitions
Demonstrating deep and broad grassroots support for Colorado’s schools and colleges, the Bright Colorado coalition today submitted 142,160 signatures to the Secretary of State’s office in support of Initiative 25. The overwhelming success of the petition drive reflects the mood of many Coloradans that the ongoing cuts to public education have gone too far.
“Getting people to sign was quite easy,” said Julie Dillon, a Littleton parent who had never been involved in a signature effort before Initiative 25. “It is clear the people of Colorado feel we must stop shortsighted and irresponsible cuts to our schools and start reinvesting in education. They know it’s the key to our children’s future and to our economy.”
When certified by the Secretary of State’s office, the initiative will be placed on the Nov. 1, 2011, ballot, giving Coloradans the opportunity to stop the destructive cuts to schools. Initiative 25 would inject almost $3 billion into public education, preschool through higher education, during the next five years.
Sen. Rollie Heath, one of the authors of the initiative, said the groundswell of support for Initiative 25 demonstrates Coloradans recognize the need to invest in education to strengthen our communities and our economy.
“Coloradans know that educated children and an educated workforce are critical elements to attracting the types of jobs and companies to Colorado that we need to be successful,” Heath said.
Great Education Colorado, along with more than 40 other organizations, played a huge role in the petition drive. More than 650 volunteers in more than 100 communities engaged their friends and neighbors about the future of our state and the quality of schools as they circulated petitions.
“Now the question for Colorado voters is ‘What kind of Colorado do we want?’ Do we want a state that reinvests in its future by educating our kids and our workforce, or a state that funds education at close to the lowest level in our country?” Heath said.
“By voting yes, Colorado will establish itself as a national leader by reinvesting in our future, our kids, jobs and our economy,” Heath said. “It will state loud and clear that we are open for business. That’s the best economic development message we can send.”
To be certified for the Nov. 1, 2011, ballot, the Secretary of State’s office needs to verify at least 86,105 of the 142,160 signatures are from registered voters. The campaign submitted substantially more signatures than necessary to virtually guarantee the initiative will be placed on the ballot.