Colorado’s Amendment 66 and the Controversial Struggle for Approval


Likely one of the most controversial political proposals to Colorado law since the legalization of recreational marijuana is Amendment 66, also known as the Tax Increase for Educational Initiative or Initiative 22, is unmistakably regarded as a very touchy subject. Controversy over the support, or lack thereof, has seen received robust amounts of publicity that’s brought the whole nation in on the debate. Everyone in Colorado has had to ask themselves, should we support Colorado’s Amendment 66?

To some the answer comes with little thought; they simply don’t want to pay higher taxes for anything in Colorado’s already sluggish economy. However, for those pursuing a rational sound decision there’s much to consider. Anyone with a brain (and the desire to preserve the characteristic in future generations) knows that our nation requires sturdier support for our education system, and Colorado is a prime example. Without knowledge of specific details, Amendment 66 can sound like a change every state should implement because of the expanded funds for each individual student. Unfortunately, Amendment 66 is home to the Devil in the details. The passion and drive behind the motion is a genuine concern to improve the future generations’ quality of life. How the proposers came to such conclusions without feeling unreasonable isn’t quite known but where they went wrong is very clear.

Amendment 66 is attached to an already in place piece of legislation that proves to be a key source for disgust if passing Amendment 66. Senate Bill 13-213 was brought into effect early 2013, significantly raising the amount of funds spent towards the education system. In fact, SB 13 213 raises the K-12 annual spending amount to the total amount spent in the previous year alone. It’s pretty easy to see where this is going. The government has already decided to spend much more than taxpayers are currently paying. If Amendment 66 passes, tax on citizen’s income will rise from 4.63% to 5.00% for those earning less than $75,000 annually and from 4.63% to 5.9% for those earning more than $75,000 annually. These statistics are only scratching the surface, however, this data is typically where the line is drawn. Voters know that if they fail to pass Initiative 22 then the Senate Bill 13 213 will automatically become revoked and other approaches will have to be considered.

It’s safe to say that providing larger funds for education will improve the quality of life and create a smarter nation overall, but that implies that all promises are made. A couple states over in California, for example, results of similar changes to legislation as Amendment 66 and SB 13 213 credit those opposing the change. Highest taxes ever seen in the nation’s history were passed under the category to improve education and yet the state continued to see an even higher loss in teachers and a declining overall quality of education. Such bills tend to be packaged like a Trojan horse. They’re designed to appeal to the public as an anecdote, only to slowly deplete the economy of it’s fragile life after it’s accepted and written into law. Amendment 66 surely has positive aspects but it’s proved to be unsolid and indirect about where citizens’ hard earned money will go. Complete support for the bill is going to take rock-solid plan that implicates proven strategies for success before the majority of voters are willing to hand over their cash in this already poor economy.

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