Special Election March 24, 2015 Regarding the Ballot Initiative to Change the use of existing City Sales Tax

Salida, CO – A special election regarding a possible change to the use and allocation of existing City Sales Tax will be held on Tuesday, March 24, 2015.  The election is a mail-in ballot only; ballots will be mailed to active registered voters between March 2-9, 2015. Ballots need to be returned by 7:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 24 to Salida City Hall at 448 E 1st Street, Suite 112, Salida, Colorado 81201.

You can register to vote up to the day of the election, so please register to vote if you have not already.  You may go online to www.govotecolorado.com to register to vote or update your current voter registration.  You may also register to vote or update your registration at Salida City Hall or the Chaffee County Clerks Office. Please note that this election is for Salida residents only and you will need to be a resident of Colorado for a minimum of 22 days before March 24, 2015 (resident no later than March 2, 2015) in order to vote in this election.

The City has created a page on the City website to provide citizens with information about the special election. The outcome of the election could affect how much money the City invests in capital improvements versus providing a variety of municipal services.  Please visit https://cityofsalida.com/projects/2015-special-election/ for more information.

The three possible outcomes are (1) Ordinance 2015-02 will commit the city to spending at least $1 million per year on streets improvements (2) Ordinance 2014-28 will commit the city to spending 75% of one-third of the city sales tax on streets while continuing to spend 44% of two-thirds of the sales tax on capital; or (3) make no changes to the current requirements. Both of the ballot questions contain new reporting requirements to improve available information about where taxpayer dollars are being spent.

We encourage citizens to read the ballot questions in their entirety and understand how each would amend the Salida Municipal Code. Citizens are also encouraged to attend council meetings or contact city officials with any questions. The League of Women Voters will host a forum on the issues on March 5, 2015 in the Salida City Council Chambers from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Background

Proponents Billy Carlisle and Rodney Farney circulated an initiative petition to submit a proposed ordinance to the City Council for consideration pursuant to C.R.S. 31-11-104(1), which would change the way the 2A funds are allocated. Article 11 of Title 31 in the Colorado Revised Statutes allows for any proposed ordinance to be submitted to the legislative body for consideration by filing written notice of the proposed ordinance with the clerk.

City Council chose not to adopt the proposed ordinance from Carlisle and Farney at their regular meeting held November 18, 2014. Council instead chose to refer the proposed ordinance to registered electors of the City of Salida at a special election to be held on March 24, 2015.

The proposed ordinance will not take effect unless a majority of the registered electors voting on the measure at the election vote in favor of the measure. An alternative ordinance was also submitted by the City Council to be considered by voters in the upcoming March 24, 2015 Special Election pursuant to 31-11-104(2).

If both measures are approved at the upcoming election, the one that receives the greatest number of affirmative votes will be adopted in all particulars as to which there is a conflict.