Eric Washburn: Proposition DD is small but important step to conserve Colorado’s water
Among the many ballot initiatives Steamboat residents are being asked to consider this year is state Proposition DD. As we know all too well in the Yampa Valley, water is a precious commodity we can’t take for granted. And, it’s one resource that may be in short supply in the future as climate change reduces our mountain snowpack, and Colorado’s demands for it grow, along with our booming population.
Water unites our community — it fuels our cities, ranches and recreation economy from river rafting to mountain skiing. In order to protect our future water supplies, we need to look for ways to fund implementation of Colorado’s Water Plan, issued in 2015 after months of hard work by hundreds of people across the state.
DD legalizes sports betting, which makes sense. Other states are doing it, and as we did with marijuana, Colorado should legalize it, regulate it and tax it to fund sensible programs that benefit all of us. In this case, sports betting would send money to implement Colorado’s Water Plan.
The ballot measure has strong bipartisan support. It was approved by the state legislature with resounding support on both sides of the aisle. Everyone from farmers, to environmental groups, to local businesses, to politicians, have rallied around DD. Protecting our water isn’t a partisan issue; it’s common sense.
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In our current political climate, it’s rare to see support as diverse as that for DD. The fact that so many unlikely allies have endorsed DD shows just how important it is to act now to save Colorado’s water future.
Ultimately, we will need a lot more money for Colorado’s Water Plan than Proposition DD can provide. But it’s an important start.
Please vote yes on DD.
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