Election 2018Health careHot Sheet

Backers of Denver’s mental-health tax measure say they’ll file plenty of signatures

Author: Joey Bunch - August 1, 2018 - Updated: August 2, 2018

mental health tax hikeFormer Colorado House Speaker Andrew Romanoff, now the president and CEO of Mental Health Colorado, and state Rep. Leslie Herod speak at a press conference in April to announce the Caring 4 Colorado campaign. (Photo by Joey Bunch/Colorado Politics)

Supporters of a Denver ballot measure to pass a sales tax to expand mental health and addiction services plan to turn in more than twice the required signatures Thursday to get on the November ballot.

The Caring 4 Denver campaign needed about 4,700 signatures and turned in more than 10,000.

“The success of our signature drive shows that people across the county have the power to help our communities thrive,” said state Rep. Leslie Herod, D-Denver, one of the leaders of the campaign. “Mental health and addiction challenges affect all of us, regardless of demographics, and all of us can make a difference by voting for this measure in November.”

The 0.25 percent sales tax would support mental health and addiction services, raising $45 million annually.

The city’s current total sales tax is 7.65 percent, counting local, state, transit and cultural facilities faces.

The measure is one of several that could ask Denver voters and others across the state to approve tax hikes for schools, transportation, new schools and other local needs.

(Correction: The sales tax proposal no longer has a 10-year limit, as it was originally proposed.)

Joey Bunch

Joey Bunch

Joey Bunch is the senior political correspondent for Colorado Politics. He has a 31-year career in journalism, including the last 15 in Colorado. He was part of the Denver Post team that won the Pulitzer Prize in 2013 and is a two-time Pulitzer finalist. His resume includes covering high school sports, the environment, the casino industry and civil rights in the South, as well as a short stint at CNN.