Board of Education votes to oppose Amendment 66
CASTLE ROCK, CO – The Douglas County School District (DCSD) Board of Education unanimously passed a resolution strongly opposing Amendment 66 – the ballot initiative that would raise taxes by $950,100,000 annually in the first fiscal year to fund public education.
The Board cited the disproportionate burden on Douglas County taxpayers as one of the reasons for opposing Amendment 66. An estimated $90-100 million would be paid by Douglas County taxpayers while only providing the Douglas County School District with $50 million in additional funding.
The text to the resolution is as follows:
WHEREAS, this Board of Education has already opposed Senate Bill 213, a unipartisan piece of legislation passed without input from our school district, its board members or its administrative leaders; and
WHEREAS, Amendment 66 calls for additional revenues of $950 Million to fund SB213 that not only fails to include meaningful reforms in the delivery of education, but amplifies the existing inequities in funding the students of Colorado; and
WHEREAS, Amendment 66 purports to rely centrally on the important reforms enacted by the General Assembly three years ago when it passed Senate Bill 191, according to news reports the Denver Classroom Teachers Association intends to bring a lawsuit, conveniently timed after the election, to invalidate SB191 as a violation of what the union claims is the constitutional property right of teachers to fully tenured jobs; and
WHEREAS, the additional annual cost to Douglas County taxpayers would be an estimated $90-100 million while only providing the Douglas County School District with $50 million in additional funding, and
WHEREAS, the graduated income schedule proposed under Amendment 66 would disproportionately increase the burden to Douglas County taxpayers, due to new rates that would result in an income tax increase between 8% and 27%, and on average 16% in Douglas County; and
WHEREAS, the Board of Education favors a funding system in which appropriate dollars follow individual students based on their needs (i.e., special education, free and reduced lunch, English Language Learners). SB 213, however, does not to do this. Instead, it uses a complex allocation formula to fund at-risk students in some, favored districts more than at-risk students in disfavored districts, and in the case of at-risk students who receive their education on-line, it provides them with no additional resources at all. Rather than having funding truly and completely follow the at-risk student, regardless of the district in which that student is resident and regardless of the school he or she attends, SB213 follows the politics. It rewards some districts more than others on arbitrary and capricious grounds designed to achieve a desired and pre-determined result; and
WHEREAS, the tax increase burden will be disproportionately high on small businesses that are central to the economic engine of Douglas County and Colorado, and,
WHEREAS, Amendment 66 increases the relative funding of K-12 education, and control over priorities in education resource allocation, to the state rather than local jurisdictions, it becomes a threat to future local endeavors to address capital needs.
NOW THEREFORE, IT IS RESOLVED that the Board of Education strongly opposes Amendment 66 as profoundly contrary to the best interests of the students of Douglas County and profoundly contrary to the best interests of the taxpayers of Douglas County.
APPROVED this 1st day of October, 2013, unanimously.
Download the original text of the resolution | Read the exact language of Amendment 66