25 October 2005

Support For Local TABOR Limits Thin.

A Denver Post editorial reminds us that the City of Denver is asking for relief from TABOR's spending limitations (although not its limitations on voter approval of tax increases). It isn't alone in asking for this, and most of those localities that have asked for it have gotten it.

Voters across Colorado have routinely approved de-Brucing measures for their municipalities and special districts. About 88 percent have been approved since the mid-1990s.

Most people voted for TABOR because they were concerned about legislators increasing tax rates, not because they felt that there was anything wrong with allowing government to use the money it collects from existing taxes. This is particularly true at the local level. Anything so routinely overridden by voters shouldn't be part of the state constitution.

A progressive backed proposal to replace TABOR spending limits at all levels of government with mandatory rainy day funds during period of increasing revenues would both remove a counterproductive limitation on ordinary government operations (rejecting the "drown it in a bathtub" philosophy) and position Democrats as the party of fiscal responsibility, a key issue for many suburban swing voters.

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