Oct 8, 2021 - Politics

Colorado ballot measures draw major cash

Contributions to support Colorado ballot measures
Data: Colorado Secretary of State; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

The three statewide questions on the November ballot are facing little opposition so far while proponents spend big to win.

Driving the news: The supporters behind the measures landed about $4.3 million in contributions through last month, according to an Axios Denver analysis of new state campaign finance filings.

  • Only Proposition 119 — which calls for a 5% increase in retail marijuana taxes to generate money for after-school programs — drew organized opposition. But the three groups against it raised a collective $12,555 through Sept. 29.
  • The supporters received $1.9 million. The bulk of the cash came from Gary Community Investments, an education reform supporter, and Ready Colorado, a conservative education advocacy group.

Between the lines: Much of the total $3.9 million spent so far went toward paying firms to collect signatures to petition the three measures onto the ballot.

The intrigue: Unite Colorado, a conservative group that doesn't disclose its donors, is the biggest spender. The group put $875,000 toward Proposition 120 to cut certain property taxes and spent $1.2 million on Amendment 78 to require the Legislature to vote on spending off-books state dollars.


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