‘Preying on those who require a helping hand is sickening’
Our state has a problem. The cost of living continues to increase, but wages are not keeping up. Simply paying bills can be extraordinarily stressful. Unfortunately, there is an industry that exists solely to take advantage of people in this situation — payday lenders. Preying on those who require a helping hand is sickening. That is why I urge everyone to vote “Yes” on Proposition 111, which will reduce the allowable interest rate to a maximum APR of 36 percent.
As a worshiper at St Andrew United Methodist Church, I often hear sermons about helping those who are less fortunate. That is why I care so passionately about preventing payday lenders from continuing to take advantage of the most vulnerable among us. By using legal loopholes, payday lenders can charge interest rates up to 215 percent. Payments are automatically taken out of the individuals’ bank account, meaning there is no money for essentials like food or rent.
Such harsh and unforgiving business practices should not be allowed in a civilized society. If you care about protecting people from unscrupulous lenders, vote “Yes” on Proposition 111. Let Coloradans in need know you care.
Ginny AxonHighlands Ranch
Proposition 112 would devastate Colorado’s economy
They’ve already wreaked havoc on our coal industry. Now, extreme environmental activists from the Front Range are coming for our oil and natural gas, and with it, hundreds of thousands of Colorado jobs.
Proposition 112 is one of the most economically dangerous pieces of public policy that our state has ever considered. The measure seeks to impose 2,500-foot, or about a half-mile, setbacks on any new oil and gas development. It would serve effectively as a ban on energy development in the state.
The impacts of the measure would be felt immediately. In the first year following passage, 43,000 Colorado jobs would be lost, with that number rising to 147,800 by 2030. For those of you who don’t work in the industry, you might think you would be spared from this devastation. Think again. Seventy-seven percent of the job losses would occur outside of the oil and gas industry. From retail to restaurants, to public health, almost every sector of employment in Colorado would feel the pain from this disastrous proposal.
As with so many proposals from Front Range activists, Proposition 112 would disproportionately hit the Western Slope. These are important, good-paying jobs in the communities that we call home, and they’re very much at risk.
The oil and gas industry funds a staggering amount of Colorado’s public services. With an annual economic impact of $31.4 billion, the industry contributes $1.2 billion per year in public revenue, including $330 million in the severance tax. Eighty-two percent of this revenue directly funds local public services, including schools, hospitals, roads, and more. Proposition 112 would severely impact many Colorado communities’ ability to adequately fund these crucial services.
I support the men and women who work and live in Western Colorado, which is exactly why I vigorously oppose Proposition 112.
Ray ScottGrand Junction
The author represents Mesa County’s District 7 in the Colorado Senate and is chair of the Senate’s Select Committee on Energy and the Environment.
Don’t buy scare tactics used against 112
You might have noticed that the airwaves are flooded with negative messages about Proposition 112 this election season. The messages are funded entirely by the oil and gas industry, which of course is opposed to new safety standards proposed by Proposition 112. Let’s get one thing clear: Proposition #112 is an entirely grassroots, volunteer-driven proposition focused on protecting our health and homes, schools and neighborhoods from the harmful and unwanted impacts of industrial oil and gas developments.
Those of us who will be voting yes on #112 feel strongly that new industrial oil and gas developments do not need to be so close to residential neighborhoods or our children’s schools or playgrounds. We simply want the establishment of a 2,500-foot health and safety buffer zone to keep drilling and fracking at a safe distance from our communities.
Why is this so important? Beyond the noise, air pollution, and potential for contaminated drinking water, health studies show increased risk of cancer, low birth weight, asthma and other serious issues for people who live closer than 2,500 feet from oil and gas drilling and fracking. Furthermore, the increased safety setbacks will offset the hazards associated with accidental explosions, fires and toxic spills at oil and gas sites.
The oil and gas industry is now paying millions of dollars to scare Coloradans into believing that this measure will somehow destroy our state and economy. Let’s get something else clear: The total number of oil and gas jobs in Colorado is around 30,000, less than 1 percent of employment in the state. Colorado has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country. This proposition is not going to change that. We have a strong, robust and diversified economy that will continue to be healthy well into the future.
Deborah McNamaraCampaign Coordinator for 350 ColoradoBoulder
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