Hand inserting a piece of paper into a ballot box in front of the Colorado flag.

Initiative to cap Colorado property tax increases at 4 percent approved for 2024 ballot

© iStock - Niyazz
Joe Mueller

(The Center Square) – Coloradans will decide whether to cap property taxes at 4 percent when they vote in the November 2024 general election.

Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold's office announced enough valid signatures were gathered to put Initiative #50, also called the “Voter Approval to Retain Additional Property Tax Revenue,” on the ballot. Since the initiative will change the Colorado Constitution, signatures were required from each state Senate district equal to 2 percent of the total registered voters in addition to meeting a threshold of 124,238. There were 277,357 signatures delivered, according to Griswold's office.

Advance Colorado, the conservative advocacy group backing the measure, gathered 172,231 valid signatures in 57 days, according to the organization.

Assessed valuations of property drastically increased earlier this year and resulted in property taxes increasing as much as 50 percent in some areas of the state. The proposed constitutional amendment would cap the increase in statewide property tax revenue at 4 percent annually. However, voters could allow the government to keep more through a statewide vote.

Voters also will decide whether to reduce residential property taxes under Proposition HH next month. The measure was placed on the ballot through Senate Bill 303, signed into law earlier this year by Democratic Gov. Jared Polis. If approved, residential property tax assessment rates would be reduced to 6.7 percent. School districts, fire departments and other political subdivisions losing property tax revenue would be reimbursed by the state and paid for with Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights refunds.

"It remains clear that Coloradans across the state want real property tax reform,” Michael Fields, a senior advisor for Advance Colorado, said in a statement announcing the success of getting the cap on the ballot. “Prop. HH isn't the answer because it would end our TABOR refunds, but Initiative #50 gives citizens a real solution to cap property tax increases permanently without taking any additional money out of their pockets or giving government a blank check."

The campaign to pass Prop HH said Initiative #50 will harm a wide range of government services.

“A far-right group has filed ballot measures that would place a hard property tax cap – with no accounting for population growth or the diverse needs of different regions of the state,” the website states. “This proposal, similar to Prop. 13 in California, would have absolutely devastating impacts to our state, forcing schools to close, fire districts to eliminate services, and the state budget to be further and more aggressively constrained than it already is.”