Dave Wallace: A bit more history
I want to thank James Neton for the information provided in his article referring to some taxation history, along with hitting on local issues of the mid 1980s. The mention of Mike Dube brought back some memories of that point in time.
The Empire Mine south of Craig was operating and in the process of installing the first high voltage Longwall in a United States coal mine. I worked around Mike for nearly 20 years and can attest to the fact that, not only was Mike very frugal in his position of chief electrical engineer at the mine, his attitude on justified and necessary spending carried over to the position he held as Craig councilman and mayor. I remember Mike positioning himself as a candidate running for local government and promoting upgrades in order to synchronize the city traffic lights. I don’t recall if that ever happened; maybe the funding just wasn’t there.
Eleanor Gibbons, as mentioned in James’s article, is not alone in her position believing “public voter approval is not necessary when the best interest of the community is at risk; the decision should be left up to a select few.” This attitude is not uncommon throughout many forms of government. Fortunately history was also made in 1992, when Colorado voters approved a ballot measure which added Section 20 under Article X to the Colorado Constitution, also referred to as the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, or TABOR, which states that any new tax or increase in an existing tax must be approved through public vote. We are no longer victims of taxation through ordinance; we have the right to vote on all tax measures. It’s troubling that, yet today, when tax issues are presented on the ballot, attempts are continuously aimed at undermining our Colorado Constitution.