Lake Dillon Fire Board of Directors announces opposition to three statewide ballot measures
The three ballot items would “damage Colorado's special districts, state and local governments from funding their basic levels of services related to public safety, fire protection … (and) emergency medical services,” according to the resolution, which passed on a 5-0 vote.
“Passage of any one of these measures could drastically affect our ability to respond to emergencies and provide adequate and cost-effective fire protection. Taken together, they could cripple our ability to serve the residents of our district,” said LDFPD Board president Larry Gilliland.
The resolution passed Tuesday by the five elected board members noted:
Amendment 60 would overturn past local voter approval, allowing Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue to loosen restrictive revenue and spending limitations put in place by the TABOR Amendment.
Amendment 61 would prohibit special districts from taking on debt for major capital purchases, including the acquisition of big-ticket items such as fire engines or construction of new fire stations as growth and service demands increase.
Proposition 101 would reduce the vehicle-registration fee to year 1919 levels, slashing a significant source of revenue for Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue, which responds to hundreds of traffic wrecks annually. According to a study conducted by the progressive Bell Policy Center in Denver, specific-ownership taxes generated from vehicle registrations would be cut for Summit County's fire districts from $541,693 to $6,523 annually under Proposition 101.
“Over the years, we've been extremely conscientious with the use of our tax dollars and grown along with the rest of the district to respond to the needs of our residents,” said vice-president Jerry Peterson, the longest-tenured Board member. “These measures could force Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue to cut back on the staffing, training and equipment that help ensure that we can serve our community competently and efficiently.”
Joining Gilliland and Peterson in opposition to the ballot measures were board members Linda St. John, Jim Cox and Robert Sollenberger.
For a full copy of the resolution, please see www.ldfr.org.