Douglas Bruce, TABOR Ruined Colorado, says Full Frontal with Samantha Bee


1 comment
Full Frontal with Samantha Bee took on the Taxpayers Bill of Rights and its famously cantankerous author Douglas Bruce in this March 7 segment:

While hilarious, it's worth noting that the show doesn't address what many consider to be the most fiscally destructive components of Colorado's famous tax-restricting law, most notably the so-called ratchet-down effect. The show segment blames Colorado's fiscal problems on TABOR's requirement that all taxes be approved by voters. But an arguably larger impact has been the way the law shrinks existing taxes (not just for the state government, but for local governments as well).

Approximately one billion years ago (OK, nine years ago), I wrote about how that ratchet-effect (which interacts with another big penny-pinching law) shrinks government coffers even in good times.

It's worth noting that despite its restrictive nature, TABOR doesn't tend to eliminate government so much as lead to the creation of lots of little, less efficient, and less accountable governmental taxing entities. It also increases the disparity between rich and poor and older and newer parts of town; underfunds schools; and leads to huge burdens of unfunded maintenance on everything from roads to government buildings to stormwater systems. (We pay more to replace this infrastructure down the road because we can't afford to maintain it.)

So while we enjoy Bee's show, this segment plays into a myth: That the main destructive force of TABOR is also it's most popular provision. TABOR does give taxpayers the right to vote on tax increases. But that's not the only thing it does. And it's not the big problem with the law.


Showing 1-1 of 1


Add a comment

Clicky Quantcast