STATEWIDE — The state’s largest agriculture organization is proposing a constitutional amendment for the November general election ballot that would strengthen private property rights in the state. Colorado Farm Bureau is currently gathering signatures for Initiative 108 — a constitutional amendment that will ensure property owners are properly compensated if new laws or regulations negatively impact the value of their property.
“No matter who you are or where you come from, your property is your property,” says Shawn Martini, vice president of Advocacy for the Colorado Farm Bureau. “This new amendment will further strengthen property rights in Colorado and provide a way for property owners to get a fair hearing in court when their property value is impacted.”
Historically, all citizen-backed ballot initiatives are required to gather signatures to get on the ballot. But the signature gathering process is different this year. Since the passage of Amendment 71 in 2016, signatures for constitutional amendments must be gathered from voters everywhere across the state. Since campaigns can no longer collect every signature they need simply by sitting along the 16th Street Mall in Denver, rural areas now have a say in what makes it onto the ballot.
“This is the first time rural Colorado will have an equal voice in this process,” says Martini. “Amendment 71 forces signature gatherers to get out into rural Colorado and now we get to see the new law in action on an issue that affects everyone — property rights.”
Initiative 108 is a government measure aimed at protecting all private property from being devalued because of local and state government policy. Under current case law, private property must be deemed almost completely useless in order to receive compensation.
The measure would provide anyone who feels their property has been devalued an avenue to pursue compensation.
“We strongly supported Amendment 71 two years ago. And we’re happy to be one of the first organizations to comply with the process to give rural Colorado a voice in the state’s ballot initiative process,” said Martini.
To support Initiative 108, contact the Colorado Farm Bureau at www.ColoradoFarmBureau.com or call 303-749-7503.