Colorado School Board Open Meetings, Proposition 104 (2014)

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Proposition 104
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Type:Initiated state statute
Referred by:Citizens
Topic:Government accountability
Status:Approved Approveda
2014 measures
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November 4
Amendment 67 Defeatedd
Amendment 68 Defeatedd
Proposition 104 Approveda
Proposition 105 Defeatedd
Full text
Polls
Expenditures
Local measures

A Colorado School Board Open Meetings Initiative, Proposition 104 was on the November 4, 2014 ballot in Colorado as an initiated state statute, where it was approved. The measure was designed to require meetings of the members of a board of education of a school district during which collective bargaining negotiations or employment contract negotiations take place to be open to the public.[1][2]

Election results

Below are the official, certified election results:

Colorado Proposition 104
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 1,364,747 70.09%
No582,47329.91%

Election results via: Colorado Secretary of State

Text of measure

Ballot title

The official ballot question appeared as follows:[3]

Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes requiring any meeting of a board of education, or any meeting between any representative of a school district and any representative of employees, at which a collective bargaining agreement is discussed to be open to the public?

[4]

Full initiative text

The full text of the measure read as follows:[5]

Be it Enacted by the People of the State of Colorado:
SECTION 1. 24-6-402 (1) (a) and (4) (e), Colorado Revised Statutes, are amended to read:
24-6-402. Meetings - open to public. (1) For the purposes of this section:
(a) (I) "Local public body" means any board, committee, commission, authority, or other advisory, policy-making, rule-making, or formally constituted body of any political subdivision of the state and any public or private entity to which a political subdivision, or an official thereof, has delegated a governmental decision-making function but does not include persons on the administrative staff of the local public body.
(II) NOTWITHSTANDING THE PROVISIONS OF SUBPARAGRAPH (I) OF THIS PARAGRAPH (A), IN ORDER TO ASSURE SCHOOL BOARD TRANSPARENCY "LOCAL PUBLIC BODY" SHALL INCLUDE MEMBERS OF A BOARD OF EDUCATION, SCHOOL ADMINISTRATION PERSONNEL, OR A COMBINATION THEREOF WHO ARE INVOLVED IN A MEETING WITH A REPRESENTATIVE OF EMPLOYEES AT WHICH A COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENT IS DISCUSSED.
(4) The members of a local public body subject to this part 4, upon the announcement by the local public body to the public of the topic for discussion in the executive session, including specific citation to the provision of this subsection (4) authorizing the body to meet in an executive session and identification of the particular matter to be discussed in as much detail as possible without compromising the purpose for which the executive session is authorized, and the affirmative vote of two-thirds of the quorum present, after such announcement, may hold an executive session only at a regular or special meeting and for the sole purpose of considering any of the following matters; except that no adoption of any proposed policy, position, resolution, rule, regulation, or formal action, except the review, approval, and amendment of the minutes of an executive session recorded pursuant to subparagraph (II) of paragraph (d.5) of subsection (2) of this section, shall occur at any executive session that is not open to the public:
(e) (I) Determining positions relative to matters that may be subject to negotiations; developing strategy for negotiations; and instructing negotiators.
(II) THE PROVISIONS OF SUBPARAGRAPH (I) OF THIS PARAGRAPH (E) SHALL NOT APPLY TO A MEETING OF THE MEMBERS OF A BOARD OF EDUCATION OF A SCHOOL DISTRICT:
(A) DURING WHICH NEGOTIATIONS RELATING TO COLLECTIVE BARGAINING, AS DEFINED IN SECTION 8-3-104 (3), C.R.S., ARE DISCUSSED; OR
(B) DURING WHICH NEGOTIATIONS FOR EMPLOYMENT CONTRACTS, OTHER THAN NEGOTIATIONS FOR AN INDIVIDUAL EMPLOYEE'S CONTRACT, ARE DISCUSSED.
SECTION 2. 22-32-109.4, Colorado Revised Statutes, is amended BY THE ADDITION OF A NEW SUBSECTION to read:
22-32-109.4. "Colorado School Collective Bargaining Agreement Sunshine Act" - board of education - specific duties. (4) ANY MEETING OF A BOARD OF EDUCATION AT WHICH A COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENT IS DISCUSSED SHALL BE OPEN TO THE PUBLIC AND ANY NOTICE REQUIRED BY SECTION 24-6-403(2) (C), C.R.S., SHALL BE GIVEN PRIOR TO THE MEETING.

[4]

Fiscal impact statement

According to a report on Proposition 104 put out by the Colorado Legislature, the estimate of fiscal impact was as follows:

Requiring school boards to modify negotiation practices related to collective bargaining agreements may increase local school districts' administrative workloads. The proposition applies to school districts and will not affect state spending or revenue.[4]

—Colorado Legislature[6]

Support

Supporters

  • Sunshine on Government
  • Jon Caldara, primary proponent[7]
  • Mike Krause, second proponent[8]

At the time this measure appeared on the ballot, both Caldara and Krause were employed by Independence Institute, which describes itself as a think tank that puts their "ideas into action through groundbreaking litigation, activist training, work on ballot initiatives, new media and investigative reporting." At the time, Caldara was the President of the organization and Krause was the Vice President of Operations.[9][10][11]

Caldara and Krause were also proponents for Colorado Right to Bear Arms Amendment (2014), which did not make the 2014 ballot.

Arguments

According to a summary on Proposition 104 put out by the Colorado Legislature, arguments in favor of Proposition 104 included the following:

Open meetings and transparency are basic principles of good government. This measure upholds the public's right to be informed and provides additional public oversight of government spending. Current law requires that school districts post completed collective bargaining agreements online; however, negotiations to arrive at these agreements are largely held in private meetings. Holding collective bargaining negotiations in a public forum allows for greater understanding by the public and school employees of these proceedings.[4]

—Colorado Legislature[6]

Campaign contributions

The following campaign contribution totals for Sunshine on Government were current as of December 4, 2014.[12]

PAC info:

PAC Amount raised Amount spent
Sunshine on Government $327,602.43 $20,400.00
Total $327,602.43 $20,400.00

Top contributors:

Donor Amount
Independence Institute $327,202.43
Gary Fisk $100.00
Jon Caldera $100.00
Mike Krause $100.00
Julie Mallon $100.00

Opposition

Opponents

  • Local Schools, Local Choices

Arguments

According to a summary on Proposition 104 put out by the Colorado Legislature, arguments in opposition to Proposition 104 included the following:

Voters elect local school board members to determine what is best for the school district, and this measure removes the board's freedom and flexibility to choose how to negotiate with employees. Currently, school boards are allowed to discuss collective bargaining agreements in public, and some choose to do so. Negotiations over labor contracts can be difficult, complicated, and may include sensitive employment issues. If school boards are required to have these discussions in public, they may be at a disadvantage during the negotiations, making it harder to reach a final agreement.[4]

—Colorado Legislature[6]

Campaign contributions

The following campaign contribution totals for Local Schools, Local Choices were current as of the committee's final December 4, 2014, report.[13]

PAC info:

PAC Amount raised Amount spent
Local Schools, Local Choices $64,500 $58,450
Total $64,500 $58,450

Top contributors:

Donor Amount
Colorado Education Association $43,400
Education Reform Now Advocacy $15,000
AFT Colorado $6,000

Media editorial endorsements

See also: Endorsements of Colorado ballot measures, 2014

Support

  • The Denver Post said,
The government's business is supposed to be the people's business, but that's sometimes hard to believe when it's conducted behind closed doors. Proposition 104, which would make school districts' collective bargaining process open for all to see, is a useful step in the direction of transparency. Voters should approve it.[4]

Denver Post[7]

  • The Gazette said,
Our public schools are not funded for the benefit of union leaders. They are to benefit children in a manner that advances individuals and society.

Proposition 104 will only strengthen our schools. It is pro-teacher, pro-student, pro-school and pro-taxpayer. Voters should approve it.[4]

Gazette[14]

  • The Daily Camera said,
YES. Open the school board meetings where collective bargaining is discussed. It's good for government transparency.[4]

Daily Camera[15]

Polls

See also: Polls, 2014 ballot measures

Respondents to the Suffolk University Political Research Center poll were asked the following:[16]

Proposition 104 is related to school board open meetings. Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes requiring any meeting of a board of education, or any meeting between any representative of a school district and any representative of employees, at which a collective bargaining agreement is discussed to be open to the public?

[4]

Colorado Proposition 104 (2014)
Poll Support OpposeUndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Suffolk University
10/18/2014-10/21/2014
63.8%21.6%14.2%+/-4.4500
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

Path to the ballot

See also: Laws governing the initiative process in Colorado

Supporters needed to gather 86,105 valid signatures by Monday, August 4 at 3:00 PM for the measure to appear on the ballot. Supporters submitted 127,328 signatures for this initiative on August 1, 2014.[17][18] The measure was certified for the ballot on August 13, 2014.[19]

See also

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Suggest a link

External links

Additional reading

References

  1. Legislative Council Staff and Office of Legislative Legal Services, "Memo to Jon Caldera and Mike Krause: Proposed initiative measure 2013-2014 #124, concerning school board open meetings," April 2, 2014
  2. Colorado Legislative Council, "Draft of proposed ballot initiative The School Board Transparency Act," accessed May 21, 2014
  3. Colorado Secretary of State, "Results for Proposed Initiative #124," accessed September 8, 2014
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  5. Colorado Secretary of State, "Initiative 2013-2014 #124 Final Text," accessed September 9, 2014
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Colorado State Legislature, "Proposition 104: School Board Meeting Requirements," archived September 28, 2014
  7. 7.0 7.1 Denver Post, "Proposition 104 shines a light on teacher contract talks," October 7, 2014
  8. League of Women Voters of Colorado, "2014 Ballot Issues Proponents and Opponents," accessed October 20, 2014
  9. Independence Institute, "Mike Krause," accessed May 21, 2014
  10. Independence Institute, "Jon Caldara," accessed May 21, 2014
  11. Independence Institute, "About the Independence Institute," accessed May 21, 2014
  12. TRACER, "Committee Detail: Sunshine on Government," accessed October 26, 2014
  13. TRACER, "Committee Detail: Local Schools, Local Choices," accessed October 26, 2014
  14. The Gazette, "EDITORIAL: Prop. 104 will open the smoke-filled room," October 14, 2014
  15. Daily Camera, "Endorsements, 2014," November 2, 2014
  16. Suffolk University Political Research Center, "October 22, 2014 Colorado US Senate, Governor & General Election," accessed October 27, 2014
  17. Facebook, "Independence Institute," August 1, 2014
  18. Chalkbeat Colorado, "Backers of public negotiations initiative turn in signatures," August 4, 2014
  19. Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition, "Initiative to open school board labor negotiations certified for November ballot," August 13, 2014