*UPDATE*:City Council referred a question to the April 4, 2017 municipal election ballot asking voters to allow the City to retain $6 million for stormwater, by Resolution 7-17.
Ballot Text: WITHOUT INCREASING TAXES, SHALL THE CITY OF COLORADO SPRINGS BE PERMITTED TO RETAIN AND SPEND UP TO $6,000,000, THE ESTIMATED 2016 FISCAL YEAR REVENUE ABOVE THE 2016 FISCAL YEAR REVENUE AND SPENDING LIMITATIONS, AND A LIKE AMOUNT OF ANY EXCESS REVENUE IN FISCAL YEAR 2017, SOLELY FOR STORMWATER PROJECTS LOCATED WITHIN THE CITY OF COLORADO SPRINGS, ALL AS REQUIRED OF THE CITY UNDER LAW, PERMIT OR CONTRACT, AS A VOTER APPROVED REVENUE CHANGE AND EXCEPTION TO ANY CONSTITUTIONAL OR CHARTER LIMITATIONS THAT MAY OTHERWISE APPLY, WITH EXCESS REVENUE IN FISCAL YEARS 2016 AND 2017 BEYOND THIS $6,000,000 REVENUE CHANGE TO BE REFUNDED TO TAXPAYERS IN SUCH MANNER AS COUNCIL SHALL DETERMINE?
For more information about the April 4, 2017 municipal election, visit coloradosprings.gov/election.
Mayor recommends asking voters to allow City to retain $6 million for stormwater
In 2016, the economy improved and as a result sales tax and other revenue increased, ultimately growing faster than allowed by TABOR. Mayor Suthers is recommending that City Council place a question on the April ballot asking voters to allow the City to retain $6 million in excess revenue in 2016, and up to the same amount in 2017, to be used for designated stormwater projects.
“The city has a significant and urgent funding need in stormwater, which is the subject of a federal lawsuit filed against Colorado Springs by the EPA. We must remain laser-focused on addressing that issue,” said Mayor Suthers. “This is an opportunity to invest now, when the economy is good, and meet these needs without cutting vital services such as public safety when we have a lean year in the future.”
Should this potential ballot measure pass, any remaining excess revenue would be refunded to residents through a credit on their utility bill. Doing this, rather than refunding it as a property tax rebate, is a more equitable solution as it does not limit the refund only to homeowners. Those contributing the money (via sales tax) would get the money back.