A "vote no" committee opposing the city's proposed stormwater fee
on the Nov. 7 ballot has raised $35,635, with the largest single donation coming from Americans for Prosperity, according to a campaign finance report filed today, Oct. 30.
AFP, which gave $15,000, is a national conservative organization funded by the billionaire Koch brothers, who represent the ultra conservative wing of the Republican party.
We've reached out to the Colorado office of AFP by email and voicemail and will circle back with its comments if and when we hear something.
The city is seeking voter permission to impose $5-a-month fees on all households and $30 per acre on commercial property to fund stormwater projects. Another class of payer is owners of more than five-acre parcels that are undeveloped
; those fees will be set by the stormwater manager. The money is needed
, the city argues, to fund a $460-million deal with Pueblo to better control the city's runoff. The ballot question is known as 2A.
The second biggest single donor to Springstaxpayers.com
is IACE (I Am Created Equal), which is overseen by Laura Carno, a seasoned political operative who ran Steve Bach's successful mayor campaign in 2011. It gave $13,000.
Third largest donation is from Tim Hoiles, a member of the Hoiles family that owned Freedom Communications, which owned the Gazette
for decades before selling it several years ago. He's given two donations totaling $6,000. When his family owned the newspaper, the Gazette
's editorial pages reflected the Libertarian philosophy of limited government intrusion and participation in public business. He recently spoke
before City Council about special districts' debt limits.
Other donors gave small amounts, including former City Councilor Helen Collins, who gave $50.
The committee has spent most of the money on Facebook ads and media buys.
Invest COS, the "vote yes" committee, has raised $311,290 but has not yet filed the report covering the second half of October. It's due Friday, Nov. 3.