Colorado voters will decide on two statewide ballot measures in the Nov. 7 election to give up their hard-earned tax dollars for dubious government spending, plus some local government and school board races.

The big-ticket item for taxpayers is Proposition HH, that promises the state will curb expected property tax hikes somewhat for next year, if taxpayers agree to forfeit their annual tax refund under the Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR).

The catch, and there always is one — property taxes will still increase, plus local government and schools can still hike your property taxes even more. In exchange for agreeing to higher property taxes, Coloradans will also see their TABOR refunds disappear altogether over the next several years.

It’s a bad deal either way.

The second measure is Prop II that calls for sin taxes to cough up another $24 million for Gov. Polis’s “free universal preschool” that turns out not to be so universal or free as to include even the poorest among us.

Thousands of Colorado families believed their 4-year-olds would get tuition-free full-day preschool through Colorado’s new universal preschool program. In July, they found out it wasn’t true.


The state didn’t have enough money for every child from a low-income family or with another risk factor to get full-day classes. Instead, only a fraction of them — those with low-income status and a second risk factor — would get the longer school day at no cost to their families. The rest had to come up with the extra tuition money themselves, drop down to a half-day program, or bow out altogether.

Read Chalkbeat Colorado’s fact check on Polis’s failed program here.

Ballot mailing begins on Oct. 16 with 130 voting centers and 400 drop boxes to open by Oct. 31, as befitting the spookiest day of the year.