As Castle Rock residents start working to fill out ballots by the Nov. 2 deadline, they are being asked to consider four separate tax measures, including creating new revenue streams to allow the town to purchase open space and adequately fund the parks and recreation department.
While two tax measures focus on paying for public safety resources, Castle Rock council members say ballot measures 2B and 2C are in line with following what citizens have identified as priorities. The Castle Rock Town Council approved asking voters to approve tax increases to help pay to keep open space a priority and increase staffing for the parks and recreation department.
The first measure is Ballot question 2B: Parks and Recreation sales tax on lodging. If approved, the town is looking to increase revenue by $650,000 a year by implementing a 6% sales tax on lodging. According to the ballot wording, the funds would be used solely for parks and recreation purposes.
Ballot question 2C: Open space sales tax would help the town raise revenue to pay for open space. The measure is asking voters to approve a 0.1% sales and use tax increase, which would cost citizens a penny for every $10 spent in taxable purchase.
If approved, town officials estimate annual revenue to increase by just over $1.8 million, with funds to go directly towards acquiring, developing and maintaining open space and trails.
With voters deciding the tax measures, the Castle Rock Town Council unanimously approved a resolution on Oct. 5 stating they all support the approval not just questions 2B and 2C, but also questions 2A and 2D, which are focused on increasing revenue to fund police and fire department needs and improve the town’s roads.
Castle Rock resident Caryn Ann Harlos said she is against all four tax measures. Speaking during the Oct. 5 meeting, Harlos said approving tax increases for parks and recreation purposes is government overreach.
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