Taxes vs. Gridlock

Colorado’s Legislature enters its final week of its 120 Day Session with still several important outstanding pieces of legislation. Senate President Kevin Grantham addressed the need for a regular funding source for Colorado roads. House Bill 1242 “New Transportation Infrastructure Funding Revenue” faces an uphill battle as the Legislature debates passing a bill that will put a referendum on the Fall ballot asking voters to increase their sales tax. The South Metro Denver Chamber of Commerce Legislative Action Committee (LAC) recently hosted “Transportation Yesterday to Today.” Panelists included Colorado Department of Transportation Director Shailen P. Bhatt who spoke frankly about Colorado’s transportation challenges saying Denver’s traffic patterns are ranked as one of the most unpredictable day-to-day compared with cities its size across the country.

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The Jetsons vs. The Flintstones — Colorado’s struggle with past, present and future transportation needs.

For example, traveling from the South Metro area into downtown Denver on one day may only take 25 minutes. Whereas the same route on Tuesday may take 50 minutes. According to Bhatt, this inconsistent travel time can be caused by just one accident that shuts down the highway (built in the 60s) only leaving one lane open for through traffic. This week is sure to be a lively one at the State House as interest groups and legislators struggle to find common ground on a solution to Colorado’s transportation funding that continues to be a very contentious issue.

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