Ballots are in the mail, election day draws near and people are starting to get serious about the issues in this year's election.

Previously, I talked about Amendment 73 and how it would affect your taxes depending on your situation. But, now I want to lay out the arguments for and against the measure.

In a nutshell, Amendment 73 would increase funding for public education by raising income taxes for some individuals, increasing the corporate income tax rate, and setting new assessment rats for the property taxes levied by school districts.

Anytime you mention raising tax increase you're going to hear backlash. At the same time, the lament of deficiencies, short-comings, and budget restraints crippling our education system is deafening. So, what is the solution?

A non-partisan research staff of the Colorado General Assembly analyzed the amendment and it's ramifications and submitted their findings to voters for their examination.

Some would say passing Amendment 73 is one piece to the puzzle.

1. "The state needs a sustainable source of revenue to adequately fund public education." Colorado reduced education funding as a result of the recession and funding levels never returned to what they were previously.  Schools have been forced to limit teacher salaries, increase class sizes, and in about half of Colorado districts have implemented four-day weeks.
2. "The measure provides property tax relief for business property owners, farmers, and ranchers who have paid an increasingly  higher proportion of property taxes compared to residential property owners." This measure would diminish the inequities between residential and nonresidential property owners.
3. "One of the government's most important functions is to provide children with a high-quality public education." Local districts can decide hot to prioritize spending the new revenue.
4. "Constitutional constraints have suppressed local property tax revenue in many areas and led to greater pressure on the state general operating budget to meet required education funding levels." This would allow the state to use more if its general funds for things like transportation, public safety, and healthcare.

Here are the arguments against Amendment 73.

1. "The measure imposes a tax increase without any guarantee of increased academic achievement." Besides, the state share of the school funding formula increased by $425.6 million without a tax.
2."Increasing the state income tax could negatively impact the state's economy." People paying more taxes would have less money to spend, save, and invest, and businesses would have less money to invest in their workers.
3."The measure increases the property tax burden on homeowners, providing a tax cut for businesses at the expense of homeowners." It makes the complicated property tax system even more complicated.
4."The measure does not allow the state legislature to adjust the income tax thresholds to account for inflation." Over the course of time, more money would be obligated for education and the state not able to use additional revenue on other needs.

So there you have the arguments for and against Amendment 73. It' s up to you decide which way to vote.

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