17 October 2014

Vote Yes on Denver Ballot Issue 2A

Vote Now!

I filled out my mail in ballot today, and will drop it off at a 24 hour drop box (all of which have been open since October 15, 2014 in Denver), today or tomorrow.

If you vote by mail in Colorado, you should have your ballot for the 2014 general election by now.  If you don't, take action to make sure that you can vote.  Due to recent legislative changes, it is easier than every to vote, and the register to vote close to the election, than ever before in Colorado.

Previous Posts In This Series

In previous posts, I've discussed Colorado's four state ballot issues:

* Amendment 67 (personhood - vote no);
* Amendment 68 (horsetrack casino gambling - vote yes);
* Proposition 104 (restrictions on collective bargaining with school boards - vote no); and
* Proposition 105 (labeling genetically modified food - vote no).

I have also written about Colorado's judicial retention elections in 2014.

I've also discussed the importance of electing Democrats this year in Colorado.  Once again, Colorado is a critical swing state in both the U.S. Senate and U.S. House races, in addition to having a very close Governor's race underway.

In particular, the performance of incumbent Colorado state treasurer Walker Stapleton has been dismal.  (Incumbent  Republican Secretary of State Scott Gessler's performance has also been dismal, but he isn't running for re-election.)

Referred Measure 2A

Denver's Preschool Program, which was improved in 2006, provides access to high quality preschool for all Denver 4 year olds and is financed with a 0.12% sales tax (12 cents per 100 dollars).  The program will end in 2016 if not reauthorized.  Referred measure 2A will reauthorize the program and increase the sale tax amount to 0.15% (15 cents per 100 dollars) from 0.12%.

Also on the ballot is the City and County of Denver, Colorado is local referred measure 2A.  This ballot measure reauthorizes and expands Denver's Preschool Program.

Why Should You Vote Yes on Referred Measure 2A in Denver?

One of Mayor Hickenlooper's initiatives in Denver, before he became Colorado's Governor, was to subsidize preschool education, which is much more costly than K-12 education which is supported by state and school district tax dollars.

Preschool programs are more effective, by far, improving the lifetime academic performance of low income, black and Hispanic children relative to their middle class and affluent peers, than any other form of education spending.  2013 and 2014 Denver Preschool Program students did better than their peers who didn't attend a DPP program on their third-grade reading TCAP tests.

Participation in a preschool program also significantly reduces the likelihood that a child will be abused or neglected.  And, a parent's ability to put a child in preschool at an affordable price greatly increases the economic well being of low income and middle class families, both because it reduces the amount of money that must be devoted to child care, and because it makes it possible for a parent to obtain at least part-time employment where it would otherwise have been very difficult.

Denver's economic well being is well served by having all children (or at least as many as possible) whose parents want to be able to place them in preschool programs do so.  The preschool program in Denver has generally been a great success.  This is an investment in children that is well worth it.

The United States has a social welfare system and economy that produces epic rates of poverty for children, while almost no senior citizens, and a far smaller proportion of adults are destitute.  Poverty rates are particularly high for children of preschool age.  So, preschool subsidies are also justified in terms of relative demographic justice.

Vote Yes on Denver Referred Measure 2A.  This funds a preschool program that works and provides exceptionally great rewards compared to other public spending programs.


Anonymous said...

This measure also calls for an increased number of paid members of the board along with an increase in the amount of money they can spend on their expenses. It seems to me like the amount of money this bill will raise will be offset by the increased amount of money that will go toward board member expenses. I'd be really interested in hearing your thoughts on this.

andrew said...

Board member expenses are tiny relative to the total amount of money spent on the program. Even very significant increases in board member expenses would be a drop in the bucket relative to increased spending on the program.

Dave Barnes said...

I voted NO on everything.
It is much easier that way.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your post. This was the only part of the ballot I was unclear on and now I'm good! I hope people make sure to turn in their ballots!

Anonymous said...

I certainly voted NO on the horse track gambling. All due respect, do your research next time on this one! It's benefiting one out of state company to crush the local economies of black hawk, central city and cripple creek. Moreover, the extra money going to schools is less than 1% of most schools' annual money.

In other words, an out of state company will give parcels out to crush the local economy while making themselves monopoly-style rich. It's actually a no brainer for Coloradans. Not to even mention several other valid arguments. That's why it gets very little support - i.e. NONE of the local newspapers.

andrew said...

@ Anoymous - you are on off topic and should be posting a comment on the Issue 68 post, But, I will address your points anyway.

I don't give a shit about crushing the local casino economies of Black Hawk, Central city, and Cripple Creek, in exchange for a boost in Aurora's economy. Those casino economies exist only at the sufferance of special privileges in the state constitution themselves. The net gain to education spending probably is negligible since increased collections from Aurora will be offset by declining collections from Black Hawk, Central City and Cripple Creek.

The jobs are in Colorado either way, and the existing Colorado casinos aren't all Colorado corporations anyway, and all of the corporations regardless of their homes, have investors all over the place. I don't care which 1%ers get a piece of Colorado's gambling action.