Amendment 74: A Serious Threat to the Colorado Economy
We should all be concerned about Amendment 74, as well as Proposition 112, and the unintended negative consequences on Colorado’s economic health and well-being of future generations. This is not a partisan plea, but a plea to vote in good conscience for Colorado’s economy and vibrancy.
While Amendment 74 presents itself as a property rights initiative, it could actually jeopardize Colorado property rights, cost tens of thousands of jobs, and burden taxpayers and local governments with billions of dollars in frivolous lawsuits, as seen in Oregon, where a similar measure passed in 2004 resulted in more than $20 billion in lawsuits in three years! After three years of frustration in Oregon, voters had to take action and rescind the measure.
Amendment 74 and Proposition 112 are bad for Colorado’s economy. It’s no wonder that these measures have received bipartisan opposition.
The confusing nature of Amendment 74 was most recently highlighted when the Colorado Springs Gazette withdrew its original support of the initiative, and the paper now states that it made an error in its endorsement. According to the Gazette, “Voters could easily make a similar mistake, so we urge readers to consider the full ramifications of this ballot measure.” See the full editorial here.
“Galloway fully supports landowner property rights, but we believe that Amendment 74 creates serious unintended consequences for Colorado.”
Amendment 74 could lead Colorado down a very uncertain and dangerous path. The Denver Post states that voters should “soundly reject” this “innocuous sounding ballot initiative,” because the amendment “could open up a world of trouble.” The amendment suggests that it would allow property owners fair compensation for decreased property values, but according to The Colorado Independent, “This amendment would either bankrupt state and local governments or cause them to abandon all regulation of private property. In no scenario would the promised benefits of the amendment come to pass….”
Part of the confusion surrounding support for Amendment 74 is due to the major funding it has received from the oil and gas industry. However, this oil and gas support is most likely out of concern for their own interests if Proposition 112 passes, which could cripple the oil and gas industry due to highly increased setbacks for drilling. The passage of Amendment 74 (if Proposition 112 passes) would allow the oil and gas industry to pursue compensation for their losses.
However, the oil and gas industry failed to consider that if Proposition 112 fails, which current polls indicate it may, and Amendment 74 passes, this could also cripple their industry.
If Amendment 74 passes, those who feel that the drilling of new wells will adversely affect property values (which may be a substantial number of people – that is why Proposition 112 is on the ballot), can then sue for the anticipated loss of property values due to the drilling. The oil and gas industry have thus created a Catch 22 for themselves by supporting Amendment 74.
Amendment 74 could also cripple Colorado’s real estate development and construction industries. When real estate development and construction are affected, it means that a whole host of people are out of work – from architects and engineers; to commercial and residential real estate brokers; to plumbers and electricians and every contractor involved in the construction of new projects; to city staff who are involved in the review and approval of new projects. It’s not just the land developers and home builders who are affected by Amendment 74; it is every industry tied to the success of those industries within Colorado.
We urge you to get out and vote NO on Amendment 74 and Proposition 112 as well. Let’s not let the seriously flawed Amendment 74 jeopardize our economy and our state! If you wish to get involved with the campaign in opposition to Amendment 74, here is a link to their web page: https://no74.co/