Election

Colorado Election Results: All Three Statewide Measures Go Down in Flames

The key word for the results of three statewide measures put before voters on November 2 was "no." While counts are still unofficial at the Colorado Secretary of State's Office, all three are losing handily, with no nail-biters.

Two of the three measures were essentially sponsored by Colorado Rising Action, a conservative fiscal nonprofit: Amendment 78, which called for the power to transfer custodial funds (state revenue generated by means other than taxes) from the state treasurer to the Colorado Legislature, and Proposition 120, a proposal that would have reduced property-tax rates for multi-family housing from 7.15 percent to 6.5 percent beginning next year and also decreased property taxes on lodging properties.

Off-year elections are traditionally a time when ideologically inclined groups promote their concepts, under the theory that low voter turnout can be used to an advantage. But while the number of Coloradans who cast ballots was far from overwhelming — only an estimated 32.01 percent did so — the strategy didn't work this time around. With all 64 Colorado counties reporting, Amendment 78 is losing 56.5 to 43.5 percent, and Proposition 120 is going down 56.89 to 43.11 percent.

The highest-profile proposal was Proposition 119, which envisioned a 5 percent increase in recreational marijuana taxes, with the proceeds going toward the State Learning Environment and Academic Progress Initiative (LEAP); after-school classes and programs, plus tutoring efforts, would have benefited from the extra funding. The concept had support from some big names, including former Denver mayors Federico Peña and Wellington Webb, as well as ex-governors Bill Owens and Bill Ritter. But voters weren't convinced, and the current count is 54.49 against to 45.51 percent in favor.

Here are the current totals for the three measures, last updated at 3:29 a.m. today, November 3:

Amendment 78

Yes/For: 522,943 votes
43.50 percent
No/Against: 679,220 votes
56.50 percent

Proposition 119

Yes/For: 556,884 votes
45.51 percent
No/Against: 666,788
54.49 percent

Proposition 120

Yes/For: 522,978 votes
43.11 percent
No/Against: 690,085 votes
56.89 percent
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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts