January 11, 2018
Dear Mr. President, Madame Speaker, and members of the General Assembly:
For the last three years, funding and financing of state transportation infrastructure has been stalled in legislative debate primarily around the issue of the sources of revenue.
Now there is an opportunity for common ground.
With Colorado’s economic prosperity and an unexpected windfall from recently passed federal tax reform, there is nearly one billion dollars of new un-programmed revenues.
As business leaders from throughout Colorado, we implore you to seize this opportunity and use a significant portion – no less than $300M – of these new funds as a major foundation to solve our growing transportation crisis. An ongoing, multi-year commitment of General Fund dollars is essential to create the modern-day infrastructure needed to keep our economy thriving.
The Governor’s call for $148.2M of the new revenues for transportation is an important and greatly appreciated start, but with over ten billion dollars in transportation needs, let’s build upon it.
Why is this important?
Growth and economic prosperity are a double edge sword. We laud the significant economic gains and the recognition for being one of the strongest state economies in the country. But, frustration with growth is increasing in large part because our transportation infrastructure isn’t keeping pace.
And then there are counties and towns in Colorado that are struggling economically. While they may not have the growth pressures of some urban areas, they have important transportation projects that need attention.
Coloradans know state revenues are increasing, and they expect state leaders to invest some of those dollars in transportation infrastructure.
Additionally, it may be to our advantage to make a more substantial investment in transportation as the federal government considers an infrastructure bill that favors states and communities that are able to commit their own resources. Currently, Colorado’s low level of transportation funding puts it at a disadvantage.
We are eager to work with you to find the common ground that has thus far eluded us. We are asking you to make an investment in Colorado’s future by committing a significant share of the new revenue to transportation.
Dirk Draper, CEO and President
Colorado Springs Chamber and EDC
Carl Maxey, Chairman
Northern Colorado Legislative Alliance
Mike Kopp, President and CEO
Greg Fulton, President
Colorado Motor Carriers Association
Chris Romer, President and CEO
Vail Valley Partnership
David May, President and CEO
Fort Collins Chamber of Commerce
Robert Golden, President and CEO
South Metro Chamber of Commerce
Mindy McCloughan, President and CEO
Loveland Chamber of Commerce
Sarah MacQuiddy, President
Greeley Chamber of Commerce
Rich Werner, President and CEO
Upstate Colorado Economic Development
Andy Montgomery, CEO
Northern Colorado Economic Alliance
Jack Llewellyn, Executive Director
Durango Chamber of Commerce
Kara Stoller, CEO
Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association
Angie Anderson, President & CEO
Glenwood Chamber Resort Association
Shelly McManus, Executive Director
Kremmling Area Chamber of Commerce
Melanie Swearengin, Executive Director
Conifer Area Chamber of Commerce
Debbie Miller, President
Greater Woodland Park Chamber of Commerce
Dave Davia, Executive Vice President and CEO
Colorado Association of Mechanical and Plumbing Contractors
Jeff Wasden, President
Colorado Business Roundtable
Deanne Mulvihill, Executive Director
Berthoud Area Chamber of Commerce