Voters in three Colorado locales to decide transportation funding questions

September 30, 2022

Keith Goble

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Transportation funding is a topic of multiple measures on fall ballots in the state of Colorado.

El Paso County

The Nov. 8 ballot in El Paso County will include a question to benefit transportation work.

Voters in the state’s most populous county will decide whether to extend a 1 cent sales tax for regional and multimodal road projects.

Specifically, the revenue would be used to fund the Pike Peak Rural Transportation Authority. The regional agency builds and maintains roads throughout the county that includes the city of Colorado Springs.

County voters initially approved the tax in 2004 and extended it in 2014. Tax funds through the years have been used for projects that include the Interstate 25 “Gap” widening between Monument and Castle Rock.

The tax in the county is scheduled to sunset in 2024. The extension would authorize tax collection through 2034.

Supporters say the tax is estimated to generate up to $1 billion over the next decade.

Most of the tax revenue – 55% – will continue to fund capital improvements. Another 35% would be used for maintenance work. The other 10% would go to transit.

The ballot question will include a list of capital projects such as connecting the north terminus of Powers Boulevard with Voyager Parkway and I-25. The project has a $120 million price tag.

Boulder County

Voters in Boulder County also will decide on a transportation funding question.

The county has collected a transportation tax since 2001. The 0.1% countywide sales and use tax has paid for paving roadway shoulders, intersection safety improvements, regional trails, and pedestrian underpasses. The tax is set to sunset in June 2024.

Question 1C on the November ballot will ask voters whether to extend the tax to pay for maintaining and improving existing transportation infrastructure.

Most of the revenue – 55% – would be used for roadway safety. Specifically, money would be used for road shoulders, flood resilience and creek restoration, intersection safety, and mountain road repair.

Supporters say that without the extension the county will be forced to terminate many of the existing transit services and mobility programs to route available funds for basic maintenance of existing roads.

They add that extending the tax would allow the county to leverage $390 million in state and federal grant dollars for local projects.

Pueblo West

Ballots in the city of Pueblo West will again include a question to aid road work.

Voters in the locale south of Colorado Springs will decide whether to authorize a 1% sales tax to pay for road repairs, maintenance, and improvements.

The sales tax would account for as much as $5 million annually to help address road issues on the city’s 345 miles of roads. Tax revenue would be routed to the county to perform all work. There would be a 10-year sunset for the sales tax.

Similar questions on the city’s ballot were defeated in 2014 and 2018. LL

More Land Line coverage of Colorado news is available.

 

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Keith Goble has been covering trucking-related laws since 2000. His daily web reports, radio news and “OOIDA’s State Watch” in Land Line Magazine are the industry’s premier sources for information regarding state legislative affairs.