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Chaffee Housing Authority Proposes Ballot Measures to Address Housing Crisis

CHA announces its intention to pursue two crucial ballot measures in November 2024 to tackle the housing crisis gripping Chaffee County. With the aim of securing vital resources for housing programs and projects, CHA is advocating for the elimination of current Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR) spending limits and the implementation of a modest sales tax increase.

The proposed measures are as follows:

De-Brucing Question: The de-brucing measure allows CHA to keep state, local and grant funding and intergovernmental revenues above the constitutional TABOR caps, while not increasing or changing existing  taxes for and has no impact to County taxpayers or property owners. If the de-brucing measure passes, CHA can proceed with the plan to continue construction on Jane’s Place that would likely commence in early 2025.

Chaffee County, the City of Salida, the Town of Buena Vista, the Town of Poncha Springs, and both local school districts, along with most jurisdictions across the State of Colorado, have all sought and received voter approval to de-bruce since TABOR passed in 1992.

Sales Tax Increase: CHA proposes a 0.50% (half percent) sales tax within Salida, Buena Vista, and unincorporated Chaffee County, with a 10-year sunset provision. Estimated to generate $3.5 million annually through 2035, this tax will fund CHA programs and projects aimed at bolstering affordable housing and housing security within the community. 

CHA conducted a survey of Chaffee County residents in February 2024 to better understand the community’s desire to create a designated funding source for housing projects in the County. The survey showed that 59% of respondents support a 0.50% (half-percent) sales tax increase, which would generate $3.5 million dollars a year to fund affordable housing construction projects and expand programming to help solve the affordable housing crisis in Chaffee County. 

The CHA's decision to pursue these ballot measures underscores the urgency of addressing the housing crisis in Chaffee County. With the gap between housing demand and supply widening, and a significant portion of residents struggling with affordability, action is urgently needed.

CHA plans to commence public outreach efforts to inform residents about the TABOR circumstances and the ballot measure requests. Additionally, the governing bodies of CHA's member jurisdictions will be required to vote and adopt resolutions to refer the proposed measures to the November ballot.

CHA would leverage these funds to partner with developers and the community to construct or secure up to 200 affordable housing units over 10 years utilizing strategies that have been effectively used in other rural resort mountain communities.


These strategies could include: 

  • Partnering with developers to subsidize their affordable housing developments to improve housing costs affordability.

  • Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) incentives for homeowners wishing to build deed restricted ADUs.

  • Land banking for future affordable or inclusionary housing projects.

  • Repurposing motels or commercial space to apartments.

  • Converting existing units to deed restricted units through a buy down program.

  • Rental subsidy and a down payment assistance programs. 

CHA Ballot Measure Opinion Survey -
Download the pdf here.

CHA Ballot Measure Survey Executive Summary & Topline Results -
Download the pdf here.

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