Tune-up for Tuesday

A voter's guide to the county and state issues and the candidates on Tuesday's ballot

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As voters hit the polls Tuesday, they will decide on many local and state issues and candidates.

Polls in Colorado and Carbon County, Wyo., are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday in the general election.

The following wrap-up serves as a voter's guide to the issues and candidates they can expect to see on the ballot.

Moffat County races

Moffat County's only contested race, the bid for sheriff, includes three candidates: Republican Tim Jantz, winner of the August Republican primary election, Vic Alton, an Independent, and Don Kroese, an unaffiliated write-in candidate.

Jantz, a sergeant with the Moffat County Sheriff's Office, has 23 years of law enforcement experience.

Alton has 37 years of law enforcement experience and currently is a corporal with the Sheriff's Office.

Kroese worked for 17 years with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and has two years with Forbes Certified Welding.

The race for the Moffat County commissioner District 3 seat has been pre-determined. Republican Tom Mathers sewed up the GOP nomination by winning the August primary. With no Democratic opponent, and no write-in candidates stepping up to fill the void, Mathers is unopposed in the general election.

Other uncontested county races include Republican incumbents Clerk and Recor-der Elaine Sullivan, Treasurer Robert Razzano, Assessor Suzanne Brinks and Coroner Owen Grant.

Voters also will decide on whether to retain six judges. Court of Appeals judges Russell E. Carparelli, Janice B. Davidson, Alan M. Loeb, Jose D.L. Marquez, and Robert M. Russel, and Michael A. O'Hara, chief judge of the 14th Judicial District, are all up for retention.

Moffat County issues

Moffat County voters will decide three local issues on Election Day. They are:

Craig Rural Fire Protection District is asking voters to app-rove a 1.5 mill-levy increase for the purchase of equipment vital to the department's operations.

The department is requesting -- for the third time in five years -- a tax increase for a 10-year capital improvement plan.

An approved mill levy would raise about $350,000 per year.

Residential and agriculture property owners currently pay $15.90 annually per $100,000 of assessed value and would pay $27.86 annually if the fire mill levy were approved.

Business owners' taxes would increase from $57.92 to $101.42 a year per $100,000 of assessed value.

Colorado Northwestern Community College is asking voters to approve a three-mill tax extension that would account for about one-third of the Craig campus's $3.2 million budget.

Property owners -- residential and agriculture -- currently pay $23.88 per year for each $100,000 of assessed value. Business owners dole out $87 per year for each $100,000 of assessed value.

If the mill levy passes, the cost for higher education would remain the same for an indefinite period of time.

The Craig City Council is asking voters to approve proposed changes to the city's charter, which was last amended in 2003.

The main changes proposed are: allowing the council to set salaries for members and the mayor starting next term, giving the city manager authority over day-to-day operations and the mayor presenting a "state of the city" address each year.

The proposed changes also delete outdated items and provide references to new laws.

Both the city council and a committee of residents recommended the changes.

Routt County

Voters in Hayden will decide on one issue Tuesday.

Referendum 5A asks voters in the West Routt Library District whether the library district can remove the revenue limits set forth in the Taxpayers Bill of Rights, or TABOR. It is not a new tax.

TABOR limits a government agency's public revenues to the amount the agency receive the year before, plus an adjustment for inflation and population growth.

By approving 5A, the library will be able to collect funds that exceed the limitations in place because of TABOR.

Voters will also decide county races for: the District 3 commissioner seat, clerk and recorder, treasurer, assessor, sheriff, surveyor, coroner and seven judges up for retention.

For a complete list of candidates and a sample ballot, visit the Steamboat Pilot & Today Web site at www.steamboatpilot.com.

Rio Blanco County

Election officials in Rio Blanco County are expecting a large turnout at the polls Tuesday. The ballot in Rio Blanco includes deciding a question pertaining to funding allocations for a health service district and several uncontested races.

Uncontested candidates up for election Tuesday are:

Joe F. Collins. A Republican, he is vying for the District 1 seat on the Board of Rio Blanco County Commissioners. Collins will replace chairman Kim Cook, also a Republican.

Deputy coroner Randall C. Cochran. Cochran, who defeated a Rangely clinic physician Dr. Wallace Salter in the August primary election to earn the GOP nomination, has 15 years of experience has deputy coroner, eight of which are in Rio Blanco. He also owns Cochran Memorial Chapel in Meeker.

Cochran will replace long-time coroner Dr. David Eskelson, who had been the county coroner for 42 years.

County clerk Nancy Amick, Republican incumbent.

Treasurer Karen Arnold, Republican incumbent.

Assessor Renae T. Neilson, Republican incumbent.

Sheriff Si Woodruff, Republican incumbent.

Surveyor James W. Joy, Republican incumbent.

Rio Blanco County voters will also decide whether to allocate a 7.28 mill levy to support a health service district in the county's eastern portion. If the question is approved, the mill levy could not be increased without voter approval.

Carbon County, Wyo.

In addition to federal and state offices, voters will be asked to make choices on three constitutional amendments, and two Carbon County questions:

Constitutional Amendment A, if approved, would clarify that all monies deposited in the Permanent Wyoming Mineral Trust Fund are inviolate permanent funds of the state.

Constitutional Amendment B, if approved, would repeal the current limitation on the amount of property tax revenues that may be redistributed by the state, in order to equalize funding among all school districts in the state.

Constitutional Amendment C, if approved, would create permanent funds for higher education scholarships, and improve the quality of higher education in the state.

One Percent Sales and Use Tax Question, if approved, would continue a 1 percent excise tax in Carbon County for the purpose of general revenue upon retail sales and other transactions.

Two Percent County Lod-ging Tax Question, if approved, would continue a two percent sales tax on lodging services for the promotion of tourism.

For a full listing of local, state and federal issues and candidates facing Carbon County voters on Tuesday's ballot, visit the Wyoming Secretary of State Web site at soswy.state.wy.us.

Or, for more information, call the Carbon County Clerk's Office in Rawlins, Wyo., at (307) 328-2667.

The following issues will appear on all ballots in Colorado counties:

Amendment 38: Petitions -- Proposes adding a new section to the Colorado Constitution that expands the ability of citizens to propose changes to state and local laws; modifies current procedures for proposing changes to laws; limits governing bodies ability to change, enact, or repeal measures proposed by citizens and decided by voters, and limits the number of measures governing bodies may exempt from voter challenge.

Amendment 39: School district spending requirements -- Two ballot proposals -- Amendment 39 and Referendum J -- seek establish requirements for school district spending. Voters may choose to vote for one, both, or neither of the proposals. Amendment 39 would require each school district to spend at least 65 percent of its operating budget on specific items.

Amendment 40: Term limits for Supreme Court and Court of Appeals Judges -- Proposes limiting the number of terms that Supreme Court justices, appellate court judges may serve.

Amendment 41: Standards of conduct in government -- Proposes adding a new article to the Colorado Constitution that prohibits officials and government employees from accepting any amount of money or more than $50 in gifts and bans lobbyists from giving gifts to elected officials.

Amendment 42: Colorado minimum wage -- Proposes raising the minimum wage from $5.15 per hour to $6.85 per hour, adjusts the wage annually for inflation, and increases the minimum wage for tipped employees.

Amendment 43: Marriage -- It would define marriage in Colorado as a union between one man and one woman only.

Amendment 44: Marijuana possession -- Proposes legalizing the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana for adults 21 or older.

Referendum E: Property tax reduction for disabled veterans -- Proposes reducing property taxes for qualified disabled veterans, and defines a qualified disabled veteran.

Referendum G: Obsolete constitutional provisions -- Proposes removing provisions, dates, and references to laws that are obsolete from three sections of the constitution and eliminating specific gender references in one section of the constitution.

Referendum H: Limiting a state business income tax deduction -- Proposes increasing state income taxes owed for some businesses that deduct wages or other compensation paid to unauthorized aliens.

Referendum I: Domestic partnerships -- Proposes creating a new legal partnership, providing same sex couples the opportunity to obtain legal protections and responsibilities granted to married couples.

Referendum J: School district spending requirements -- It would require each school district to spend at least 65 percent of its operating budget on specific items, allows voters to exempt a school district from the 65 percent requirement, and requires each school district to submit an annual budget in a standardized format to the state.

Referendum K: Immigration lawsuit against federal government -- It would require the state of Colorado to sue the federal government to demand enforcement of existing federal immigration laws.

The following candidates will appear on ballots in all Colorado counties:

Colorado governor: Bob Beauprez/Janet Rowland-R, Bill Ritter/Barbara O'Brien-D, Clyde Harkins/Tracy Davison-AC, Dawn Winkler-Kinateder/Richard Randall-L, Paul Noel Fiorino/Heather Anne McKibbin-U.

Secretary of State: Ken Gordon-D, and Mike Coffman-R.

State treasurer: Mark Hillman-R, and Cary Kennedy-D.

Attorney general: Fern O'Brien-D, and John Suthers-R.

District 3 House of Representatives: Scott Tipton, R-Cortez, John Salazar, D-Manassa, and Bert Sargent, L-Hotchkiss.

Colorado House District 57 seat: Andrew Gold, D-Tabernash, incumbent Al White, R-Winter Park, and Mike Kein, L-Oak Creek.

University of Colorado regents: Susan Hakanson, D-Glenwood Springs, who is campaigning against Tilman Bishop, R-Grand Junction, to represent District 3 covering Craig. At-large candidates include Marcus McCarty, an unaffiliated candidate from Denver, Douglas Campbell, ACP-Arvada, Daniel Ong, L-Boulder, Brian Davidson, R-Denver, and Stephen Ludwig, D-Denver.

Moffat County

  • Centennial Mall, 1111 W. Victory Way, Craig
  • Hamilton Town Hall, South Highway 13, Hamilton
  • Maybell Community Center, 103 Ellis, Maybell
  • Dinosaur Town Hall, 333 South Stegosaurus, Dinosaur

The Moffat County Clerk and Recorder's Office will not be open for motor vehicle or county records work on Tuesday. All office workers will be helping with the General Election on that day. Office hours on Wednesday are from 8 a.m. until 4:45 p.m. For more information, call the Clerk and Recorder's Office at 824-9104.

Hayden

  • Routt County Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall, 398 S. Poplar St., Hayden

Rio Blanco County

  • Precincts 1 and 2 -- Radino Center, 403 N. White St., Rangely
  • Precincts 3 and 4 -- Fairfield Center, 200 Main St., Meeker

Baggs, Carbon County, Wyo.

  • Carbon County Senior Services, 340 Whippoorwill, Baggs

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