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Stapleton Campaign Swing Through the Southeast

L to R: Sheriff Zordel, Commissioner Buxton-Andrade, Norm Arends, Commissioner Tom Grasmick, Walker Stapleton, Commissioners Cook and Ausmus

 

Colorado Treasurer, Walker Stapleton, visited with local constituents and local GOP representatives during a stop at Brew Unto Others in Lamar, Wednesday, June 13th.

Stapleton, the current state treasurer for over seven years, is the leading Republican candidate for governor heading into the June 26th state primary.  He discussed some of the citizens’ concerns he’s encountered as he toured the 64 counties in the state.

“There’s a frustration voiced about two separate worlds that govern finance and economic development in the state, and one is policies being made from Denver and that if they are correct choices, they will have a negative impact on the current economic gains we’ve enjoyed over the past year. The other is lack of economic development representation for small and medium sized businesses in rural areas of the state,” he said, adding that we have to pay attention to helping business foster in other areas away from the Front Range.

Stapleton said economic development will be key to the state’s future and the next governor will need to have a comprehensive approach that includes rural areas. “We’ve seen about one million people add to the Front Range population over the past decade and the metro areas are starting to burst at the seams.  We have to see to it that the Office of Economic Development and International Trade doesn’t ignore the advantages that come from the rural sector.”

While some people blame TABOR for economic limitations, Stapleton says part of that problem also comes from Amendments 23 and Gallagher, a system referred to as the “Perfect Storm” several decades ago. “The heart of TABOR provides Colorado residents with the right to vote on revenue increases and hold’s government accountable for explaining where our tax dollars are being spent.  If you look at a local level, say in El Paso County, you’ll see that people are willing to pay for infrastructure increases, but are more mistrustful over a block of money heading into what they feel is a governmental black hole.  We have problems with automatic ratchets in our budgets.  Gallagher and 23 are antiquated when it comes to how commercial and residential properties are calculated.”

Stapleton explained that the state needs to get a hold on what is making us an indebtedness state, especially entitlement systems such as PERA and Medicaid. He said there’s been an expanded coverage of 600,000 people on Medicaid in the state and once the federal payments go away, we’re going to have to find a way to continue to pay an on-going cost on a sustainable basis out of our general fund.  “Right now we have young people in Colorado who are paying more for health care than they do for their mortgages and there’s no choice of providers and that’s going to be an essential element in that election as well,” he said.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of LamarConsumer IssuesCountyEconomyElectionsFeaturedHealthHousingPolitics

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