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Prop CC Not Linked to Colo. Seniors' Property Tax Exemption

Advocates for Proposition CC say there is nothing on the Nov. 5 ballot that would repeal the Homestead Exemption. (Galatas)
Advocates for Proposition CC say there is nothing on the Nov. 5 ballot that would repeal the Homestead Exemption. (Galatas)
October 22, 2019

DENVER — Many Colorado voters already have received their November 5 election ballots, and supporters of Proposition CC are hoping to clear up some confusion.

Bob Brocker, president of the group Colorado Senior Lobby, said some concerns have been raised about how the proposition might impact a constitutional amendment meant to reduce property-tax burdens for seniors. Brocker explained Prop CC is simply asking voters' permission to earmark any excess revenues collected under the Taxpayers Bill of Rights - or TABOR - for investments in education and transportation.

"It's really important for people to understand that Proposition CC does not change in any way the senior property tax exemption,” Brocker said. “If you get out the blue book and read it, there's nothing in there about the senior property-tax exemption."

In 2000, Colorado voters passed a constitutional amendment to give qualifying homeowners age 65 and older a break on their property taxes. Brocker said he believes the current confusion stems from a decision the legislature made in 2017 to put these tax breaks at the front of the line in years when taxpayers receive TABOR refunds.

Some opponents of Prop CC worry ending TABOR refunds could lead to the expansion of state government.

Brocker pointed out even though no TABOR refunds have been issued since 2017, the senior property-tax exemption has remained intact and fully funded. He said all Prop CC would do is take funding of the Senior Property Tax Exemption back to the way things were before 2017.

"It's really important to note that the senior property-tax exemption was paid most of the years, actually, prior to 2017 when that law was passed,” he said.

Brocker said voters can rest assured a vote for Proposition CC is not a vote against their property-tax exemption and, in fact, he said there is nothing on the November ballot that would repeal the Homestead Exemption.

Eric Galatas, Public News Service - CO