Chamber Opposes Amendment 69: Single-Payer Health Care
The Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce opposes Amendment 69, which is on this fall’s ballot. This is a proposed state constitutional amendment that would create a government-run single-payer health care finance system that is larger than the state budget. The proposed new government entity would be called ColoradoCares.
Before taking this position, the views of both supporters and opponents were sought and studied. You can find a background paper here that describes Amendment 69, lists the general arguments for and against and provides links to both campaigns.
In summary, the primary reasons the Chamber opposes Amendment 69 are:
- This is a state constitutional amendment, making it inflexible and extremely difficult to change.
- A huge tax increase would be forever built into the state’s constitution and falls disproportionately heavy on small business owners and farmers. Funding for ColoradoCares would come from an additional 10 percent tax on all income generated in Colorado. All employees will pay a 3.33 percent tax and their employers will pay 6.67 percent tax, regardless of employment status (full-time, part-time, seasonal, per diem, etc.) or resident status. Citizens earning non-payroll income will pay a 10 percent tax on business income, rental income, farm and ranch income, taxable pensions, taxable Social Security, taxable interest, dividends, taxable refunds and credits, capital gains, taxable IRA distributions, and other income.
- Amendment 69 injects significant uncertainty into the Colorado economy.
- Supporters disparage the current system as too political and costly but propose to replace it with a system that is political and will be more expense. They would create a large government entity governed by politicians with unlimited taxing power.
- Amendment 69 does nothing to address the underlying cost drivers in health care.
- The governing structure has significant problems including lack of accountability.
After all of the above and other concerns, proponents do not make their case that what they propose will provide better, more affordable health care to Coloradoans.
NO to Amendment 69.