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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Pueblo County Ballot Issue 1A

Dominion Voting Systems BallotThis measure would increase the Pueblo County sales and use tax rate by 0.45% starting January 1, 2018 and ending no later than December 31, 2047. The money raised would be used to design, acquire, construct, renovate, equip and provide capital maintenance for a new Pueblo County Detention Center (Jail) and to remodel the current jail facility for use as a Treatment Center for both substance abuse and mental health disorders. The Treatment Center would be leased and staffed through a public/private partnership with local treatment providers.Ballot Language:SHALL PUEBLO COUNTY TAXES BE INCREASED$10,589,460.00 ANNUALLY (FIRST FULL FISCAL YEAR DOLLAR INCREASE STARTING IN 2018) BY INCREASING THE COUNTY’S SALES AND USE TAX RATE BY NINE-TWENTIETHS OF ONE CENT PER DOLLAR (0.45%) FOR THE PURPOSE OF DESIGNING, ACQUIRING, CONSTRUCTING, RENOVATING, EQUIPPING, AND PROVIDING CAPITAL MAINTENANCE TO A PUEBLO COUNTY DETENTION CENTER AND TREATMENT CENTER AND FOR RELATED EXPENDITURES WITH SUCH TAX INCREASE COMMENCING ON JANUARY 1, 2018 AND ENDING NO LATER THAN DECEMBER 31, 2047, AND SHALL SUCH TAX REVENUES BE A VOTER-APPROVED REVENUE CHANGE THAT MAY BE COLLECTED, RETAINED, AND SPENT BY THE COUNTY CONSISTENT WITH THIS BALLOT ISSUE BUT WITHOUT STATUTORY OR CONSTITUTIONAL LIMITATION OR CONDITION, INCLUDING ARTICLE X, SECTION 20 OF THE COLORADO CONSTITUTION, SECTION 29-1-301, COLORADO REVISED STATUTES, OR ANY OTHER LAW?
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Arguments

• Our current jail is greatly overcrowded. That situation makes it dangerous for officers and staff as well as for inmates. If there should be an incident in which someone is injured or killed, a lawsuit could cost the County substantially more than building the new facility. • The current jail is structurally unsound and requires extensive renovation. • Building a new jail closer to the Judicial Building would greatly reduce the cost of transporting inmates to court each week. • Converting the usable part of the current jail building to a treatment center for both substance abuse and mental disorders would help break the cycle of re-incarceration and provide a more appropriate approach for people suffering from these disorders. • It is anticipated that the treatment center would also result in reduced recidivism
• We don’t need to pay more taxes. • We already have community treatment programs for drug abuse and mental health issues. • Building a new jail is a good idea but adding the treatment center is too much added cost. • The overcrowding problem lies with the courts. We also need to work on making the court system more efficient. • We will just fill it up again with people doing the same damage they do now, and with people who suffer from mental illness and substance abuse who are too ill or addicted to be treated successfully by the local current level of treatment.

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