1-minute voter guide: What to know about Proposition HH on property taxes
Proposition HH asks Colorado voters to consider a political proffer:
- The state will reduce the pending increase in property taxes — if you agree to a reduction or elimination in TABOR refunds.
Why it matters: The ballot measure is a high-priced bet from Gov. Jared Polis and Democratic lawmakers who believe frustration with housing prices will convince voters to erode the Taxpayer's Bill of Rights even though similar referendums failed in recent years.
State of play: How much property owners would save with the slight reduction in property taxes differs widely — as does how much less they would receive in taxpayer refunds.
- The math — and competing estimates from liberal and conservative organizations on the impacts — may convince voters to make the trade.
- But not all are convinced, particularly the business community and local governments, which are largely aligned against Prop. HH.
Be smart: Do the math for yourself with this calculator produced by nonpartisan legislative analysts.
By the numbers: The financial result for the state is more clear because it would permit 1% more in spending above the current TABOR cap each year.
- If inflation and the economy meet projections, Colorado lawmakers could have $2.2 billion more to spend each year by the time the measure expires in 10 years.
- Much of that money is likely to go toward public education and possibly eliminate the state's long-standing deficit to schools known as the negative factor.
Reality check: The ballot measure goes even further than addressing immediate property taxes.
- Colorado lawmakers can extend the proposition after its 10 year deadline without voter approval.
- It would impose a property tax revenue cap on most local governments, unless the local authority votes to opt out.
- Older homeowners that qualify for the senior homestead exemption could continue to receive the benefit if they move.
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