Change Address

VOTE411 Voter Guide

City of Boulder Direct Election of the Mayor Ballot Question 2E

City of Boulder Direct Election of the Mayor Ballot Question 2ECharter Amendments Related to Direct Election of MayorShall Article II, Sections 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 14, and 15 of the Boulder City Charter be amended to provide for the direct election of the mayor by ranked choice (instant runoff) voting? Major Provisions:The Boulder City Council currently consists of 9 members, 5 elected every 2 years with the top 4 vote-getters serving 4-year terms and the 5th vote-getter serving a 2-year term. The City Council chooses the mayor from among its members. Boulder’s “weak” mayor is a member of Council with additional administrative and ceremonial roles, as opposed to strong mayors who act as full-time chief executives.If approved by voters, this ballot measure would create a separate mayoral election on the ballot beginning in 2023. The duties and powers of the mayor would not change. The mayor would serve a 2-year term, as contrasted with the 4-year terms of Council members. This measure introduces an 8-year term limit for mayor or a 4-year term limit when the mayor previously served 3 terms as a Council member. A Council member with two years remaining on their term may be elected mayor, with the fifth highest vote-getter taking the vacant Council seat of the new mayor.If more than two candidates run for mayor, the ballot would ask voters to rank candidates, #1 for the first choice, #2 for the second choice and so on. The tabulation method is known as instant-runoff voting (IRV), a form of ranked choice voting (RCV). Upon counting the first-choice votes, if one candidate has a majority, that candidate is the winner. If no candidate gets a majority, then the candidate with the fewest votes is eliminated. Any ballot marked for the eliminated candidate has the vote go toward the second-choice candidate (if one is marked). The elimination-and-transfer rounds continue until one candidate is declared a winner.A VOTE “YES” MEANS that Boulder would directly elect its mayor and use instant-runoff voting if more than 2 mayoral candidates are on the ballot.A VOTE “NO” MEANS that City Council would continue to choose the mayor from among the City Council members elected by the voters of Boulder. Background:Organizers collected a substantial number of signatures and then worked with the city attorney’s office to modify the measure to provide for filling all the seats on Council. Council members requested and approved other modifications in the length of the mayor’s term and the election year for the mayor. The City Council referred this measure to the ballot on a 5 to 4 vote in Ordinance 8420.The Boulder County Clerk told City Council that the county is not authorized to conduct an IRV election, and that the city should plan to conduct its own IRV election. The city is not currently prepared financially or logistically to do so._____________________Pregunta 2E de la boleta electoral de la ciudad de BoulderEnmiendas a los estatutos relacionados con la elección directa del alcalde ¿Deberán enmendarse las Secciones 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 14 y 15 del Artículo II de los Estatutos de la Ciudad de Boulder para disponer la elección directa del alcalde mediante votación de elección por rango (segunda vuelta instantánea)? Disposiciones principales:El Consejo de la Ciudad de Boulder actualmente consta de 9 miembros, 5 elegidos cada 2 años con los 4 principales candidatos que obtienen los votos por un período de 4 años y el quinto que obtiene los votos por un período de 2 años. El Ayuntamiento elige al alcalde entre sus miembros. El alcalde "débil" de Boulder es un miembro del Consejo con funciones administrativas y ceremoniales adicionales, a diferencia de los alcaldes fuertes que actúan como directores ejecutivos a tiempo completo. Si los votantes la aprueban, esta medida de votación crearía una elección de alcalde separada en la boleta a partir deL 2023. Los deberes y poderes del alcalde no cambiarían. El alcalde serviría un término de 2 años, en contraste con los términos de 4 años de los miembros del Concejo. Esta medida introduce un límite de mandato de 8 años para alcalde o un límite de mandato de 4 años cuando el alcalde sirvió anteriormente 3 mandatos como miembro del Concejo. Un miembro del Concejo con dos años restantes en su mandato puede ser elegido alcalde, y el quinto con mayor número de votos ocupará el puesto vacante del Concejo del nuevo alcalde. Si más de dos candidatos se postulan para alcalde, la boleta pedirá a los votantes que clasifiquen a los candidatos, el # 1 para la primera opción, el # 2 para la segunda opción y así sucesivamente. El método de tabulación se conoce como votación de segunda vuelta instantánea (IRV), una forma de votación de elección clasificada (RCV). Al contar los votos de primera opción, si un candidato tiene la mayoría, ese candidato es el ganador. Si ningún candidato obtiene la mayoría, se elimina al candidato con menos votos. Cualquier boleta marcada para el candidato eliminado tiene el voto para el candidato de segunda opción (si hay uno marcado). Las rondas de eliminación y transferencia continúan hasta que un candidato sea declarado ganador. UN VOTO “SÍ” SIGNIFICA que Boulder elegiría directamente a su alcalde y utilizaría la votación de segunda vuelta instantánea si hay más de 2 candidatos a alcalde en la boleta.UN VOTO “NO” SIGNIFICA que el Concejo Municipal continuaría eligiendo al alcalde entre los miembros del Concejo Municipal elegidos por los votantes de Boulder. Antecedentes:Los organizadores recolectaron una cantidad sustancial de firmas y luego trabajaron con la oficina del fiscal de la ciudad para modificar la medida para proveer para llenar todos los asientos en el Concejo. Los miembros del consejo solicitaron y aprobaron otras modificaciones en la duración del mandato del alcalde y el año de elección para el alcalde. El Concejo Municipal refirió esta medida a la boleta electoral con un voto de 5 a 4 en la Ordenanza 8420. El Secretario del Condado de Boulder comunicó al Concejo Municipal que el condado no está autorizado para llevar a cabo una elección de IRV, y que la ciudad debería planear llevar a cabo su propia elección de IRV. Actualmente, la ciudad no está preparada financiera o logísticamente para hacerlo.

Click a candidate icon to find more information about the candidate. To compare two candidates, click the "compare" button. To start over, click a candidate icon.

  • Yes - For the Measure

  • No - Against the Measure

• All the Colorado cities larger than Boulder and several smaller than Boulder directly elect their mayor. Boulder has an antiquated system.

• Being directly elected could increase the stature of the mayor when dealing with other cities.

• Many people will run for the prestigious mayor position.

• This is not a drastic measure. It doesn’t change any of the duties or powers of the mayor, but it introduces people to a better voting method. Enacting IRV may pave the way for proportional representation on City Council via single transferable vote, which uses the same ballot design as IRV.

• IRV lets voters rank candidates rather than be limited to the choose-one voting method typically used for single-winner elections, and IRV addresses the problem of spoilers. (A spoiler candidate draws votes from the supporters of a similar candidate resulting in a dissimilar candidate winning with a plurality.)

• By putting this on the ballot and passing it, Boulder will put pressure on the state to pass legislation enabling county coordination of IRV municipal elections.

• Boulder can go back to the voters and ask for a delay in IRV implementation if neither the city nor the county can run the election in 2023.

• IRV is in use for mayoral elections in Basalt, Telluride, and Carbondale, as well as other US cities such as Santa Fe, San Francisco and Minneapolis.
• The relationship of an elected mayor with a city manager can be confusing due to the two conflicting sources of power – a mayor selected by electors and a city manager by Council. Having the City Council choose the mayor makes sense because the mayor runs the City Council meetings; Council is most affected by the mayoral decision and would choose someone they respect and believe would do the best job.

• This proposal is unlikely to attract the best candidates to run for mayor. The mayoral candidates vie for a single seat with a 2-year term. Other candidates running for Council can win one of several seats and a 4-year term.

• This is a solution in search of a problem. During the signature collection process, many Boulderites expressed surprise that the electorate doesn’t directly elect a mayor, but such lack of knowledge indicates that people haven’t been clamoring to directly elect a mayor.

• Overall, 2E takes us in the wrong direction - towards a single winner contest and a complicated ranking ballot. Boulder’s election problem is electing Council without ensuring a diversity of perspectives. A ranked ballot is not necessary for achieving “proportional representation.” Changing from a multi-winner Council election to a single-winner mayoral election is not an improvement.

• Neither the city nor the county is prepared to conduct an IRV election – in the case of the city because of the expense and training required. Approval voting, for example, could be implemented with almost no added cost or training and also addresses the spoiler problem.

• IRV auditing is not supported by Colorado’s risk-limiting auditing (RLA) software.

• The places in Colorado that have conducted IRV elections have had one tenth the population of Boulder, manually counted the ballots and did not conduct RLAs. Telluride has no plans to continue their IRV experiment in future years.

• Voters in Burlington, VT, repealed IRV after their 2009 IRV election for mayor did not elect the most preferred candidate. Burlington also showed that an IRV winner is NOT always chosen by a majority of the voters.