Denverites have a dozen citywide measures joining the already packed Nov. 3 ballot during this year’s presidential election. Each of those local measures were finalized and submitted to the Denver County Clerk’s Office by Aug. 31.
Denver City Council approved 10 of those measures for the ballot while the Denver Public Schools Board of Education referred the remaining two. None of the measures came from citizen-led initiatives this year.
Here’s what will be on Denver’s citywide ballot:
2A: Climate funding sales tax
What it does: If approved, the measure would charge shoppers an extra 2.5 cents on every $10 purchase of goods and services. Food, water, fuel and medical supplies would be among the items exempt from the tax. The proposal would raise an estimated $36 million in its first year. Cash from the tax would be spent creating jobs in the areas of renewable and clean energy technology and management of natural resources; on solar power, battery storage and other renewable energy technologies; and neighborhood-based environmental and climate justice programs, among other environmentally friendly programs.
2B: Funding for homelessness sales tax
What it does: If approved, the measures would charge shoppers an extra 2.5 cents on every $10 purchase. The measure has fewer exempted goods and services than the climate funding sales tax proposal and would raise a projected $40 million in its first year. That money would have to be spent on services and other amenities for people experiencing homelessness like housing shelters, catalytic projects and other programs.
2C: Denver City Council professional services
What it does: This measure would, if approved, allow Denver City Council to hire professionals, like an outside attorney, without approval of the mayor. The contracted professionals could be used for anything council needs to carry out its responsibilities.
2D: Creation of a Department of Transportation and Infrastructure advisory board
What it does: If approved, this measure would create an unpaid, 19-member Board of Transportation and Infrastructure. Denver City Council members would appoint 13 of those board members and the mayor would appoint the remaining six. The board would then advise the head of the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure on policy and operations. It would also review and comment on the department’s annual budget.
2E: Council approval over mayoral appointees
What it does: If approved, the measure would require that Denver City Council approve mayoral appointees. Those appointed positions include the chief of police, sheriff, fire chief, city attorney, public health director, parks director, aviation director and the planning and development manager. The mayor would still select and oversee those appointees. Incumbent appointees serving when a new mayor is sworn in would still be subject to approval.
2F: Denver City Council special meetings
What it does: If approved, the measure would allow the mayor of Denver and/or any three council members to call a special meeting of the council so long as they provide written notice at least 24 hours in advance.
2G: Expanding Denver City Council’s budget authority
What it does: If approved, the measure would allow Denver City Council to change the city’s budget mid-year. Currently council may only change a proposed budget before it is adopted. This measure would allow the group to appropriate new or excess revenues and transfer unspent money throughout the city. Those budget changes — which must pass in the form of an ordinance — could only come after council consults with the city’s chief financial officer.
2H: Municipal broadband opt-out
What it does: This measure would, if approved, opt Denver out of a 2005 state law restricting governments from using tax dollars to build broadband networks. In effect, opting out would allow the city to provide high-speed internet, though city officials have not said they want to launch such a utility yet.
2I: Denver County Clerk appointees
What it does: This measure would allow the Denver County Clerk and Recorder to appoint four people to positions within their office in addition to the deputy clerk. Currently the clerk can appoint a deputy and two others. If approved, this measure would increase the total clerk appointees to five.
2J: Repeal Denver’s pit bull ban
What it does: If approved, the measure would repeal Denver’s long standing pit bull ban. It would replace the ban with a type of restricted license for pit bulls. Owners would be required to register their dogs — limited to two pit bulls per home — pay a higher fee than is required for other dogs, maintain appropriate paperwork and have no issues for three years before the restricted license is removed.
Denver Public Schools bond measure
What it does: The measure would, if approved, allow Denver Public Schools $795 million worth of general obligation bonds to update and maintain schools, improve air conditioning, rebuild or remodel Montbello High School, and provide students access to laptops and high-speed internet, among other things.
Denver Public Schools mill levy increase
What it does: This measure would allow Denver Public Schools to increase local mill levies by up to four mills to raise up to $32 million. If approved, that money would pay to increase minimum wages for school support staff, offer educators a raise, hire and maintain nurses and hire and maintain mental health professionals and counselors. The first year’s increase would not exceed 1.55 mills and no increase in subsequent years would be greater than 1 mill.