Historic Denver's Board Votes to Oppose Amendment 68
Amendment 68 is a proposed constitutional amendment being considered by voters in November that would effectively expand gambling in Colorado to horse race tracks in Arapahoe, Mesa and Pueblo counties. If this amendment passes, it will move gambling into major urban communities, essentially reversing the 1990 election that expressly limited gaming in Colorado to the three mountain towns of Blackhawk, Central City and Cripple Creek in order to promote tourism to these historically important communities and aid in their continued vitality. Expanded gambling under Amendment 68 would run completely counter to this objective.
Passage of Amendment 68 would have devastating impacts on historic preservation in the State of Colorado. Since the inception of limited stakes gaming, Colorado’s preservation community has received over $250 million in funding for historic preservation projects statewide to rehabilitate courthouses, churches, schools, homes and commercial buildings. The grants have benefited all of Colorado’s 64 counties and have stimulated economic development and revitalization in both urban and rural communities around the state.
Historic preservation isn’t the only interest that would be hurt by the passage of Amendment 68. This move would severely diminish the $100 million in revenues Colorado collects each year through the tax on limited gaming in the three mountain communities that goes to support Colorado’s community college system, the History Colorado Center, tourism promotion, and community economic development grants, in addition to historic preservation. If this vital funding is adversely impacted, it will place even more strain on the State General Fund.
We also have the following concerns regarding the approach being taken by the proponents of Amendment 68:
• Amending the Colorado constitution to benefit a single, out-of-state company
• Exempting these racetrack casinos from the annual cost of regulation required by the Colorado Gaming Commission.
• Exempting these racetrack casinos from paying 12% of their proceeds to the county in which it resides in order to offset associated negative impacts (e.g., additional needs for road maintenance, law enforcement, etc.).
• Circumventing a local control measure that would give local residents in the host communities the opportunity to decide whether they want a casino in their community.
Colorado Preservation, Inc. and Historic Denver are asking you to join our organizations, along with the Denver Post, the Durango Herald, Colorado Municipal League, Denver-Metro Homebuilders Association, Denver Public Schools, Gilpin County Schools, Denver Firefighters Museum, Colorado PTA, the State Board for Community Colleges, and Action 22, to OPPOSE Amendment 68. Future funding to preserve and maintain Colorado’s unique and rich heritage is under attack.
Recent News on Amendment 68
Backers of Amendment 68 Forced to Pull Third Deceptive Ad
Skepticism on Arapahoe Gambling Amendment
Colorado PTA Votes to Oppose Amendment 68