I’m writing about ballot propositions 119 and 120. In short, I urge a “no” vote on both of these propositions. First, Proposition 119 sounds good, but given that schools are not and haven’t been fully funded since 2009 it would be better to fund schools that have the expertise in these areas then after school tutoring. But the devil is also in the details; the way this proposition is written there is little to no oversight as to who will be on the board administering the funds. The funds will go directly to parents instead of programs, no guidance as to what are qualified programs and no expectation that we will see any of the funds here on the Western Slope. Lastly, it could take funds away from the BEST (Building Excellent Schools Today) program, which provides needed help with capital projects of schools serving all areas of the state based on need.

Second, Proposition 120. The voters removed the Gallagher Amendment because the continuing decreases in assessed valuation for residential properties was harming taxing districts, which are funded by property taxes. This proposition would be one additional Gallagher cut and lock in lower valuation for all properties resulting in a loss of $1 billion annual in total across the state. Our local services can’t afford this.

Cheryl Carstens Miller