Several months ago, the campaign to pass Issue 2B started to gain momentum. It was on picket signs across the city; it came up in City Council discussions and piqued the interest of CSUâ€™s student government.
Local papers started filling up with editorials warning voters to pass Issue 2B â€“â€“Â a 0.85 percent increase on the Fort Collins sales tax â€“â€“Â or see a decrease in their quality of life.
The idea was to bring in more than $18 million to close a projected $5.4 million revenue gap in the cityâ€™s $310.57 million 2011-12 budget.
In interviews with the Collegian before the election, City Councilman Ben Manvel, D-1, said not passing Issue 2B â€œwouldâ€ decrease funding and, in turn, the services he said make the city great.
Before Fort Collins voted â€œyes,â€ it sounded like doomsday would descend upon our city. To reject Issue 2B was to reject our parks and recreation programs, road improvements, maintenance of city facilities and upkeep of fire and police services.
Now two weeks after the midterm elections and a â€œyesâ€ on Issue 2B, the city announced that not everything will be restored fully.
So far, residents have urged the City Council to maintain operation of the Mulberry Pool, something that was said to be closed if Issue 2B didnâ€™t pass. And only half of a $300,000 cut to Transfort is recommended to be restored in order to maintain Saturday bus services, according to a Monday Coloradoan article.
We feel somewhat mislead.
While we know the city budget will not be finalized until spring, it seems odd that the specific allocation of our increased tax money is yet to be decided.
In the coming months, we ask the city to include residents in the budget process as much as possible and be transparent about where our tax dollars will go.