Proposition CC

What is Proposition CC?

Proposition CC is a ballot initiative on the upcoming November ballot that asks voters to let the state keep and invest revenue beyond current limits set by the Tax Payers Bill of Rights (TABOR). Voters will still be asked to approve future tax increases. Prop CC also includes unprecedented transparency and accountability, requiring annual, independent audits to show the public how the money was spent. Prop CC asks Colorado voters to remove the arbitrary revenue limits which have severely hindered our ability to invest in our students, our roads, bridges and transit, and to address the needs of our fast-growing state.

How will Proposition CC allocate funds?

Prop CC would divide the money voters allow the state to invest equally between transportation, higher education and K-12 schools.

Pie chart depicting funding allocation for Proposition CC

For fiscal year 2019-20, the Office of State Planning and Budgeting June forecast is estimating state revenue subject to TABOR will exceed the cap by $412.2 million.  According to the ballot measure, the Highway Users Tax Fund (HUTF) would get a third of this funding, approximately $137.4 million.  This funding is distributed as second stream revenue, resulting in CDOT receiving 60% of this total, about $82.4 million. Funding collected in FY 2019-20 would be distributed in FY 2020-21. Of the amount transferred to CDOT, 85 percent would be used for highways and 15 percent for transit.  Prop CC mandates that the remaining 40 percent of the new money allocated for transportation would go to cities and counties.

 

What will Proposition CC do for our roads?

A stretch of highway in disrepairNearly 25% of public roads across Colorado are rated as being in “poor” condition and almost 500 bridges have been deemed “structurally deficient.”

  • Potholes are hard to miss: 40% of roads in metro Denver are deemed to be in “poor” condition.
  • Driving on roads in need of repair in Colorado costs each driver $580 per year.
  • The average motorist will lose $2,306 per year to car repairs and time lost in congestion.

The Transportation Funding Crisis in Colorado

Colorado is currently in a transportation funding crisis. The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is reporting a nine-billion-dollar funding shortfall to address the transportation needs of projects in the northwest metro region and beyond.

How did this massive funding deficit happen? Despite Colorado’s unprecedented growth over the last several decades, our transportation needs have gone unmet. Our transportation funding comes from a gas tax passed in 1992. Approximately $0.22 from every gallon of gas sold goes towards funding Colorado’s transportation network. The downside of the gas tax is that it isn’t tied to important factors such as inflation, increased gas prices and our growing economy. Modern vehicles are also more fuel-efficient which means that less revenue is generated per vehicle.

Today, Colorado spends just $69 per driver for transportation infrastructure compared to the nearly $125 per driver when the gas tax was originally passed. Since its passing in 1992, the gas tax has not changed, leading to a transportation budget that can barely keep with the costs of maintenance, let alone new improvement and multimodal investments.

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