Referred Issue 5D would increase property taxes in the Pine River Cemetery district to cover the cost of maintaining and operating the cemetery. Colorado’s state Constitution requires any tax increase be put before the voters, but the fact ism this is a pittance. Vote “yes” and keep the cemetery in good shape.
Assessed valuation in the cemetery district declined from more than $440 million for the 2010 budget to less than $231 million for 2014. The resultant cemetery revenue dropped more than 50 percent. The cemetery’s gas royalties are off more than 80 percent. Without the proposed tax increase, spending on the cemetery will be about half what it was just four years ago.
With all that, this measure would have negligible impact on taxpayers. The owner of a home worth $250,000 would pay an additional $1.50 per year – yes, a dollar and a half per year. Ag land would be taxed even less.
A cemetery is inherently a labor of respect. And to be kept presentable, it requires some work and some money. Equipment such as mowers and pumps need maintenance and replacement. Without attention, the roads will fall apart and the grounds can deteriorate.
There is no reason to risk that over less than the price of a cup of coffee. Residents of the Pine River Cemetery District should vote “yes” on Referred Issue 5D.