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Ballot measures would devastate state
Amendment 61, together with Amendment 60 and Proposition 101, would financially devastate Colorado and should be rejected in November.
Amendment 61 claims to limit governmental debt. That sounds like a good thing, right? However, governmental debt is not in and of itself a bad thing — it’s necessary to build essential things like schools, roads and hospitals. Amendment 61 would require that any structure, including bridges, prisons, libraries and hospitals, be paid for up front.
Even financially beneficial tools such as lease-back agreements, which are widely regarded as fiscally responsible, would be prohibited. Many Colorado school districts currently receive property tax revenue throughout the year, but not in August. That forces them to borrow money intermittently to cover costs, which generally even out over a yearly cycle. Amendment 61 would force some districts to schedule school March to November so they can fully fund the school year without borrowing. Imagine a school break from December to February.
Modern facilities at our colleges and universities would be a thing of the past. Projects such as the Anschutz Campus lure brilliant physicians and raise the bar of health care in Colorado. They also require a multitude of jobs to support them, before and after construction. Those jobs would now go to other states.
If you don’t use schools or hospitals, perhaps you drink water. Coloradans couldn’t fund expensive water lines or renovate treatment plans. Infrastructure repairs are costly but necessary. Remember the gas line that recently exploded in California due to aging gas lines? We shouldn’t tie our hands from preserving our investments due to misplaced fears that our government is overspending.
Jobs are currently the focus of our economy. Amendment 61 would cut billions of dollars per year in publicly financed construction. Along with the loss of those billions, so go the jobs that they support.
The amendment allows the government to borrow — but it must hold an election first, and any debt must be paid back within 10 years. Small fire protection districts would have to hold an election to buy a fire truck. Seriously.
The Colorado Constitution already requires a balanced budget. There is no deficit spending in our state. We simply don’t need this draconian law to fix what isn’t broken.
Vote no on Amendments 60 and 61 and Proposition 101.
Margaret M. Ochoa
Ken-Caryl Ranch resident

Avs primed for successful season
With the new NHL season just starting, I have hope that the Avalanche will break the spell of failing Colorado sports teams. Though they have gotten off to a slow start in the preseason, sports fans should not lose confidence. The Avs have another year with Craig Anderson, who proved last year that he can be a valuable asset to this team. Though he may have a different, and in my opinion, slightly unpredictable style of play, he is a very strong goalie.
The large problem to overcome is going to have to be the offense, which was unsatisfactory in the preseason. This shouldn’t be a problem, though, as the season goes on. The team may have struggled a little early on because it is a pretty young, inexperienced team, but once the season starts they should get rolling. There is no doubt that an offence led by players like Duchene, Stastny, Jones and Stewart will be a strong one.
Do not fret, Colorado. A lot can change in a season, and the preseason games are rarely an indicator of how well the team will do throughout the year. There is a long season ahead of us, and the Avalanche have a strong chance of success.
Travis Finley

Ever-present Hartman deserves our votes
I am 15 and not able to vote, but if I could, I would cast it for Kathy Hartman. As county commissioner she can be seen around South Jefferson County a lot.
I attended a meeting at The Peak, and she was there. I spoke at our civic association meeting, and she was there also. Best of all, I was trying to track down the correct ownership of a plot of land that I was proposing to re-landscape for our neighborhood, as my Eagle Scout Project. You guessed it, Hartman was able to find the answer and direct me to the individuals to speak with.
It has been great having such an involved commissioner in our community. Ms. Hartman, you have my future vote.
Evan McCombs