The purpose of Healthier Colorado’s Partners in Local Advocacy program is to facilitate the unique resources necessary to achieve community-driven health policy change within local communities.
Local policy is the backbone of healthy neighborhoods and communities. PiLA is our way of supporting, advocating for, and empowering locally generated ideas to improve health.
PiLA is focused on campaigns to influence local ballot initiatives or public policy decisions made by city councils, county commissions, and school or special district boards that require “lobbying activity” as defined under the IRS code.
What we’re looking for
The proposed campaign should fit within our areas of interest. This is not a grant program, at least not in the traditional sense. While financial support is one of the types of resources that can be offered, support can be provided in other forms such as a strategic guidance or in-kind contributions for materials or services – it really just depends on the needs of each unique campaign. We’re interested in campaign-ready public policy opportunities and approach projects in the spirit of partnership. Within PiLA, we work collaboratively with selected partners to provide needed resources, while also expecting that locals will power the campaign on the ground.
Resources Available for Awarded Partners
Fundraising Planning, Strategy
Do you have an idea? Does it fall within our areas of interest? Are you through the policy development phase near the campaign execution stage? We want to hear from you! Our application process and timeline is designed to be flexible enough to adapt to your community’s needs. If you have a policy change idea you’re interested in partnering on to help make it a reality, send an email to Kate Stigberg at email@example.com detailing the policy you are looking to change or pass, the method of policy change (e.g. city council vote, special district vote, ballot initiative, etc.), a brief description of the work done to date, and the anticipated timeline for the campaign. Please include PiLA Campaign in the subject line of the email.
Requests for partnership are evaluated on a rolling basis and Healthier Colorado is committed to prompt and timely responses for each proposal we receive.
November 2018 PiLA Campaigns
Yes for North Fork Ambulance
Geographic Area: Portions of Gunnison, Montrose, and Delta counties – 1,500 sq miles
Goal: The way in which this ambulance district is currently funded (membership dues) is unsustainable. This campaign aims to create a special district to help increase funding via a mill levy. The revenue collected will be used for fleet maintenance and upgrades. This issue will ask voters two questions on their ballot:
- Create a Health Services District
- Property tax (mill levy) increase to fund the district
The Friends of Emergency Medical Services
Geographic Area: Parts of Park, Teller, Douglas and Jefferson counties – 520 sq miles
Goal: This campaign strives to increase the sales tax by .5% to fund much-needed ambulance services. The tax will help support this district’s mental health crisis response efforts and to expand their current ambulance fleet.
1A is Summit’s Future
Geographic Area: Breckenridge, Keystone, Dillon, Frisco
Goal: Summit County is asking its residents to vote yes on a 4.7% mill levy to raise $8.8 million. The revenue would be crucial in funding the 5 following buckets:
- $1 million wildfire prevention
- $2 million mental health and suicide prevention
- $1.7 million recycling and waste diversion
- $1.6 million public infrastructure maintenance and improvements
- $2.5 affordable childhood care and learning
Yes on 1A: Mental Health Matters
Geographic Area: Telluride – 1,200 sq miles
Goal: This area is lacking mental health services. Therefore, the community is asking its voters to vote yes on a .75% mill levy to fund community-based mental health services.
Healthy Parks & Rivers for Everyone
Geographic Area: Denver
Goal: There is currently a $127 million backlog on maintenance projects and parks across Denver. This measure aims to create extra funding to help alleviate this backlog.
Healthy Food for Denver Kids
Geographic Area: Denver
Goal: Denver has record low unemployment rates and yet Colorado is the third fastest growing state for childhood hunger. The Healthy Food For Denver Kids campaign’s mission is to help feed Denver’s low-income kids while providing cooking, gardening, and nutrition classes to help kids make healthy choices today and into the future.
Caring 4 Denver
Geographic Area: Denver
Goal: Denver needs more mental and behavioral health programs in the city. This campaign aims to pass a measure that would create a 1/4 of 1% sales and use tax rate (25 cents on a $100-dollar purchase). Annually, these taxes would raise $45 million to fund:
- Mental health services and treatment for children and adults;
- Suicide prevention programs;
- Opioid and substance abuse prevention, treatment and recovery programs;
- Facilities and programs for those with mental health and substance abuse needs. These include: housing, joint efforts of first-responders and mental health experts, and training for first-responders. The goal is to reduce homelessness, improve long-term recovery, and reduce the use of jails and emergency rooms.
Yes on Avon Ballot Issue 2B
Geographic Area: Avon
Goal: Avon is working to decrease smoking rates. This fall, residents will have the opportunity to vote to raise the tobacco purchase age to 21 to prevent kids from starting smoking. Additionally, voters will have the chance to increase the tax on tobacco to $3/pack and 40% of other tobacco products. The funds from the tax will be used to treat cessation and addiction.
Healthy Kids, Healthy Boulder
Geographic Area: Boulder
Goal: Voting “For” the 2D measure will allow Boulder to keep additional revenues from the voter-approved 2016 sugary drinks tax. This funding will be used to fund programs that improve nutrition education, enhance physical activity opportunities, and encourage our community to make healthier choices, especially among low-income families and youth populations. If 2D does not pass, funding will be returned to sugary drink distribution companies (not restaurants, stores, or customers in Boulder).
Citizens Protecting People, Property & Open Space
Geographic Area: This special district covers the metro Denver region, extending as far north as Boulder, as far south as Castle Rock, as far east as Watkins (just beyond Aurora), and as far west as Golden and Genesee.
Goal: As the name implies, the district engages in flood prevention and mitigation activity, but what you might not know is that it is a significant funder of open space, trail and recreation development and maintenance, as these amenities often serve double duty in flood protection design. When the district was first established, the state legislature authorized its funding via property taxes at 1.0 mill. However, subsequent state constitutional changes dragged down the originally intended funding level, which took away resources that communities need to protect its residents and offer recreational amenities. This measure, 7G, would restore that funding to the district.