Vision 2020 Input Tool 2.0 Frequently Asked Questions
Why should I share my email?
Share your email so that you can stay connected to the process. Join our email list here.
What is the timeline for this effort?
In order to meet our goal of having an initiative on the ballot of 2020 that is propelled by volunteers, we need to have as close to the full six months to gather signatures as possible. Seventeen measures were submitted to legislative council on January 9th, 2020 and we will be moving through the Title Board process over the next month and a half. We hope to have petitions by early March. In the meantime, we plan on gathering as much input as possible on the measure submitted so that we can make a decision about which petition to carry that accounts for the input of many Coloradans.
How is my input going to be used?
Your input will be used in part to determine which ballot measure this group moves forward into the petitioning phase.
What is a public investment?
Public investment are those things and services that we collectively use and pay for that make our communities strong such as, schools, libraries, bike trails, transportation, and mental health services. What’s your favorite public investment?
Strategy 1 & 2 Questions:
What is Article X Section 20?
An amendment to the Colorado constitution passed in 1992, also known as TABOR. It is the most restrictive tax and revenue limitation in the country and it applies to all levels of the government from state to local. In its three main provisions, TABOR:
Mandates elections for all tax or debt increases
Limits revenue collections to a cap that, for state, is set according to the rate of inflation plus population growth.
Specifically prohibits certain kinds of taxes, including a return to a graduated income tax and a statewide property tax or new or increased real estate transfer taxes.
Didn’t the Supreme Court rule on this earlier this year?
Yes, that ruling was one step in the process of creating a ballot measure. The July Supreme Court ruling gives Colorado voters a powerful tool to help build and maintain great communities all across the state by allowing them to repeal TABOR with a single statewide vote. Repeal of TABOR is one approach for voters to consider but it is not the only avenue for reform. For anyone interested in joining fellow Coloradans in thinking about the best options for reforming our fiscal policy, join Vision 2020 here.
How does updating our tax code interact with other constitutional amendments?
Strategy 3 Questions:
Why isn’t a single tax rate (flat tax) equitable?
Income tax is just one portion of state and local taxes in Colorado. Once you factor in things like property and sales tax, the poorest 20% of Coloradans actually pay double the effective tax rate as the top 1%. Learn more here.
How does a tiered tax table/ graduated income tax work?
Under a tiered tax structure (a.k.a. graduated income tax or progressive income tax), income gets taxed at a similar amount until it increases to the next bracket (i.e. the next marginal level of income). All incomes are taxed at the starting base rate. For example, imagine two brackets: (1) 5% tax rate for all income under a $100, and (2) a 10% tax rate for all income over $100. A person with a $200 income would be taxed in the following way: ($100 x 5%) + ($100 x 10%) = a tax of $15.
What is a corporate alternative minimum tax?
A corporate alternative minimum tax only applies to C-corporations and creates a minimum tax liability for all corporations after exemptions, credits and deductions. Under the alternative minimum proposed in these measures, a corporation that currently pays $0 in income taxes would now pay $250, a corporation that pays $100 in income taxes would pay an additional $150 and any corporations with a tax liability over $250 would continue to pay what they owe.
49% of C-corporations doing business in Colorado currently pay $0 in income taxes
What are the tax tables?
Vision 2020 Policy Options
The measures that were submitted on January 9, 2020 are organized by strategy and variation. To see the language submitted, click on the variation or strategy and a linked PDF will open.
Strategy 1: Repeal Article X, Section 20: An amendment to the Colorado constitution concerning the repeal of the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR), Article X, Section 20 of the Colorado constitution.
Strategy 2: Replace Article X, Section 20 with a Different Limit on Government Gr
Strategy 3: Raise Revenue through a Graduated Income Tax
There are twelve separate measures within this strategy to account for each possible combination of the three variations. For example, one measure uses tax table A, has no specified use and no corporate change while the next measure uses tax table A, has no specified use but includes a corporate minimum and so on through all combinations. In total, six measures use tax table A and six use tax table B. For simplicity, just one measure with tax table A and one with tax table B have been linked.