Wednesday, 25 Nov 2020

Denver election results for city council measures 2C, 2D, 2E, 2F, 2G, 2H, 2I

Denver voters are deciding a series of proposals Tuesday, including two that would expand the City Council’s power. With 252,340 votes counted in early results, 2E, giving the council say into mayoral appointments, has 59.12% support, and 2G, giving the council more budget authority, has 54.74% of the vote.

Another measure, 2C, would allow the Denver City Council to hire professionals, such as an outside attorney, without the mayor’s approval. It has 55% of the votes in early returns.

“Right now we can’t initiate any changes to the budget except once a year, when we pass the budget for the following year,” said Councilwoman Robin Kniech, who proposed 2G to give the council more say in the budget process.

Historically, the Denver mayor has introduced an average of 25 bills during the year to address changes in priorities, an infusion of new money or new projects, Kniech said. “But I can’t initiate a proposal on how to spend those dollars.”

The budget proposal, like others that would give the council more input, “just ensures every idea gets transparently debated,” said Kniech, adding that cities across Colorado and the country follow similar practices.

However, Mayor Michael Hancock opposes the proposals, calling them “solutions in search of problems that Denver does not have.”

“The proponents say it’s about transparency and accountability, but it’s really about creating a platform for political grandstanding and obstruction,” Hancock said in an email.

If approved, 2E and 2G could lead to political dysfunction, threaten Denver’s AAA bond rating and make it more difficult to attract top talent, the mayor said.

Councilwoman Amanda Sawyer proposed 2E, which would require that a majority of the council confirm certain mayoral appointees, including the city attorney, public safety director, police chief, fire chief and sheriff. The mayor would still select and oversee the positions.

Other proposals on the ballot are:

  • 2D, which would create a Department of Transportation and Infrastructure advisory board. The council would appoint 13 members and the mayor would appoint six. The measure has 76.09% of the votes counted.
  • 2F, which would change the city charter to allow the mayor and/or any three council members to call a special council meeting if they provide written notice of at least 24 hours. The measure has 84.73% support.
  • 2H, which would allow Denver to opt out of a 2005 law restricting governments from using tax dollars to build broadband networks. The measure has 83.59% support.
  • 2I, which would allow the Denver County Clerk and Recorder to appoint four people to positions within the office in addition to the deputy clerk. Currently the clerk can appoint a deputy and two others. The proposal has 46.11% support.

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