Senate Bill 23 caps mill levies and debt, requires heightened disclosures
DENVER (Feb. 14, 2023) – In a major victory for advocates of improved transparency and homeowner protections across Colorado, the Senate Local Government and Housing Committee today approved SB23-110 (“Transparency For Metropolitan Districts”). The legislation offers sweeping protections to homeowners and homebuyers living in metro districts by capping mill levies and debt issued by metro districts. The legislation, sponsored by Senators Marchman, Zenzinger and Gardner, now moves to the full Senate for a vote.
“This legislation creates new statewide standards so the hundreds of thousands of families living in a metro district have an assurance of transparency,” said Senator Janice Marchman (D), a prime sponsor ofSB23-110. “The legislation also creates new standards to hold developers accountable to the communities they serve.”
Metro districts are a commonly used financing tool in new and master-planned communities, and require that all growth be paid for by development within a certain boundary—and not by existing residents or taxpayers. The financing is then front-loaded to enable new construction, including family-sized homes, in amenity-rich communities with parks, trails, safe streets, and water and sewer lines. Each metro district is heavily regulated by state law, and must first be authorized by cities and counties to construct and maintain public improvements.
“Metro districts are an essential tool in helping Colorado meet its housing crisis, and this legislation codifies important standards for accountability and transparency that are already in practice across more than 1,800 metro districts,” said Kristi Pollard, executive director of the Metro District Education Coalition.
The legislation includes the following provisions:
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About MDEC: The Metro District Education Coalition is a nonprofit, nonpartisan network of financial, legal, and technical experts who provide expertise on metro districts. We promote improved transparency and accountability on behalf of homeowners and advocate for best practices in the formation and operations of metro districts. Learn more about our work at www.metrodistricteducation.com.