Peter Marcus

U.S. Chamber exec clamps down on biz tax increases

Local chamber disses business personal property tax
The Colorado Statesman

Colorado business leaders gathered in Denver on Oct. 27 to hear from the president and chief executive of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce who cautioned against increasing taxes on job creators when the current unemployment rate hovers around 9 percent. Thomas Donohue spoke just prior to Colorado’s Nov. 1 election in which voters rejected almost all proposals for tax increases in Colorado including Proposition 103, a statewide ballot initiative that sought to raise an estimated $3 billion over five years for education funding.

A national veterans foundation is needed, Bennet says

The Colorado Statesman

U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet has taken up President Barack Obama’s initiative to help returning veterans from Afghanistan and Iraq find jobs at home. Bennet spoke at a local American Legion post in Denver on Monday, where he discussed plans for a national veterans foundation.

The foundation would act as a clearinghouse for veterans’ services and would be funded through private dollars. No federal funding would be required.

School board election yields 'Happy' results

The Colorado Statesman

Two of the three so-called “pro-reform” Denver School Board candidates who ran as a sort of political slate backed by hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions won their races Tuesday night in an all-mail election. In essence they handed victory to not only themselves, but also to Mayor Michael Hancock who had thrust himself into the spotlight to back the controversial slate. The two victories mean reform-minded school board members who support an education reform strategy spearheaded by former DPS Superintendent and current U.S. Sen.

Final arguments heard in redistricting case

The Colorado Statesman

A trial in Denver District Court to determine Colorado’s seven congressional boundaries came to a close Monday afternoon with the introduction of new maps that seek to keep the city of Aurora intact.

Denver District Court Chief Judge Robert Hyatt asked all parties to introduce new maps after hearing testimony during the 10-day court proceeding. Attorneys representing Republicans, Democrats and Latino interveners introduced their new maps by the 5 p.m. deadline on Tuesday with few changes from original proposals, aside from drawing Aurora into one whole district.

Property tax exemption for seniors would still be suspended

Hickenlooper unveils first complete budget for state
The Colorado Statesman

Gov. John Hickenlooper unveiled his first complete budget on Tuesday, a $20 billion 2012-13 proposal that would suspend a property-tax break for seniors, a move vehemently opposed by Republicans, while cutting $97.1 million from K-12 education in an effort to close an estimated $1 billion structural gap. The governor said there is $679 million that cannot be financed under currently available resources, although his budget represents a $342.6 million increase in spending over last year.

Redistricting plays out in district court

The Colorado Statesman

Members of Colorado’s congressional delegation took the stand last week in a trial in Denver District Court to determine Colorado’s new congressional boundaries. Both Republican and Democratic representatives agreed that jobs and the economy are the most significant issues facing their districts, but they disagreed on communities of interest.

Well, well, well...

But in suburban Arapahoe County?
The Colorado Statesman

Neighbors of the Gun Club Estates in Arapahoe County are concerned about their future as a Texas-based oil company begins implementing a plan to drill up to 36 wells in a 30-square-mile plot of land in eastern Aurora. The neighbors are calling on county and state officials to implement regulations that at the very least require significant setback laws so that the drilling does not occur in their backyards.

Redistricting trial underway in Denver

The Colorado Statesman

A trial in Denver District Court to determine Colorado’s new congressional boundaries got underway on Tuesday with little fanfare. Opening statements, as expected, were made for either making changes based on shifting populations and interests, or maintaining the status quo and causing “minimum disruption” to the state’s current boundaries.

Denver school board race steeped in politics

The Colorado Statesman

Denver school board candidates who consider themselves “outsiders” are accusing three other candidates of working together as a kind of unofficial slate backed by hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions. The detractors contend that a school reform agenda initially spearheaded by former DPS Superintendant and current U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet — and now being carried out by his successor, Tom Boasberg — is behind the effort to secure three of Denver’s seven school board seats that will be decided Nov. 1 in an all-mail election.

Romanoff and iDE seek long-term free market solution to poverty

The Colorado Statesman

Former House Speaker Andrew Romanoff no longer has the sparkle for politics that once beamed from his eyes. These days, the Denver Democrat and former U.S. Senate primary candidate has found the motivation for a new drive — eradicating poverty in the world’s poorest, most rural areas.