On Nov. 7, people throughout the United States took to the voting booths to vote in the 2017 elections. In Colorado, there were no statewide ballot issues. This resulted in various local elections throughout the state. Denver ballots included elections for Denver Public Schools’ Director at Large and DPS’ Director in Districts 2, 3 and 4. The ballot also put nine ballot measures up for a vote to Denver citizens. DU is located within District 1 of DPS. The School Board District 1 Director was not up for election in 2017.
Denver Public Schools (DPS) Elections:
DPS Director at Large: Barbara O’Brien (40.49%)
District 2 Director: Angela Cobian (52.43%)
District 3 Director: Carrie A. Olsen (53.86%)
District 4 Director: Jennifer Bacon (41.89%)
City of Denver Ballot Measures:
Referred Questions 2A-2G are dubbed as the “GO Bond” and aim to repair and improve Denver’s infrastructure. The GO Bond was divided into seven categories so voters could vote based on the various aspects of Denver’s infrastructure the GO Bond targeted.
Referred Question 2A: YES (75.16%)
Referred Question 2A will use $431 million in bonds for transportation projects. Some of these transportation projects include bridge repairs, 33 miles of new sidewalks and a new bus rapid transit system along East Colfax Avenue.
Referred Question 2B: YES (70.87%)
Referred Question 2B will dedicate $116.9 million to cultural organizations for them to do building improvements and additions. Some money is set to go to Red Rocks and Buell Theatre for general improvements. The Denver Art Museum, Denver Botanical Gardens and Denver Zoo will also see money to do various renovations and additions.
Referred Question 2C: YES (69.10%)
Referred Question 2C will dedicate $75 million in bonds to build a new outpatient ambulatory center. The new center is set to be 272,000 square feet and will be complete in late 2019 or early 2020.
Referred Question 2D: YES (71.52%)
Referred Question 2D will give divide $77 million in bonds between various facility improvements and three larger projects. The first project uses $25 million in bonds will go to replacing Denver Police Department’s (DPD) District 6 Station headquarters. Another $17.3 million will replace DPD’s District 5 Station headquarters. The remaining $16.2 million allots for the construction of a new fire station at 72nd Avenue and Tower Road.
Referred Question 2E: YES (72.57%)
Referred Question 2E will give $69.3 million to Denver Public Libraries. The money will be used to begin renovations on nearly half of the city’s libraries. A large portion of the money will be used to fund the first phase of the Central Library remodel.
Referred Question 2F: YES (73.26%)
Referred Question 2F will provide $151.6 million in funds to do a wide variety of park and recreation center renovations throughout the city. Some of these renovations include building a promenade along the South Platte River, adding a recreation center in the Westwood neighborhood, and adding various new amenities and renovations to existing recreation centers in the city.
Referred Question 2G: YES (67.82%)
Referred Question 2G will provide $16.5 million in funds to help the city be in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This would ensure that all public buildings and city walkways are compliant with ADA. Any remaining funds will be used for maintenance on public buildings.
Referred Question 2H: YES (68.31%)
Referred Question 2H will rename the Denver Department of Environmental Health to the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment. Alongside the name change, the board size will increase from five to nine members.
Initiated Ordinance 300: YES (54.29%)
Initiated Ordinance 300 was pushed to the ballot by the Denver Green Roof Initiative. It calls for any buildings in Denver built after Jan. 1, 2018 that have are larger than 25,000 square feet to install green roofs. Green roofs incorporate vegetation, gardens, or solar panels in order to mitigate climate change and alleviate the Urban Heat Island effect. Initiated Ordinance 300 would also apply to any existing building over 25,000 square feet that remodel their roof after Jan. 1, 2018.
As of Nov. 10, the Colorado Secretary of State reports that of the 3,602,415 registered voters, only 1,161,163 ballots were cast, resulting in a 32.23% voter turnout. The previous odd-year local election (2015) saw a 35.42% voter turnout. The 2017 local election saw worsening voter turnout, with a 3.19% decline from the 2015 local election. Updated election results can be found on the Denver Elections Division website.