Stapleton Taxes: Where Does the Money Go?

TaxesEveryone in Stapleton understands they are taxed at a higher rate than any other neighborhood in Denver. Some choose to accept it, others choose to ignore it, and everyone else chooses to complain about it. Complaining might not be that useful, unless you actually know what you are complaining about. Do you know why Stapleton residents are taxed more? Do you know where that money goes? Do you know how long that “extra tax” will be in place? These are the questions people need to be asking before making loud complaints. The Stapletonion approached the Treasury Division of the City and County of Denver to get answers to these questions. The reason Stapleton residents see a higher tax is due to the Stapleton Special District Tax, which increases many residents’ tax bill about 40% compared to anywhere else in Denver. To some people, having the word “special” next to Stapleton is all they need to hear. “I’m totally fine with our higher taxes,” says resident David Erickson. “We are special, and with that, sometimes there is a higher price to pay.” Others see it as a tricky way to simply take advantage of residents. “So, I pay taxes to help the City and County of Denver,” stated Nancy Dunlay. “But, since I live in a particular neighborhood in Denver, I have to pay a huge additional tax to help that neighborhood thrive? They are doing a lot of great things in the Highlands. I am guessing that is my tax dollars at work as well. Shouldn’t every neighborhood pay for their own upkeep and improvements?” After getting passed the name of the tax, The Stapletonion looked into where the SSDT money goes. What we found ranged from the obvious to the bizarre. You can see from the bullets below that 8% of the tax goes towards Starbucks coffee for the Stapleton firefighters, and another 4% goes to security for the Nantucket Close. For a complete list of where your extra Stapleton tax dollars are going, see below:

  • Control Tower Fund = 23%
  • Pool Fund = 17%
  • Prairie Dog Killing Fund = 11%
  • Pocket Parks Fund = 10%
  • Starbucks Coffee for Stapleton Firefighters Fund = 8%
  • Maintaining Aurora Buffer Zone = 8%
  • Stapleton Only Light Rail Fund = 6%
  • Jail Improvement Fund = 5%
  • Nantucket Close Security Fund = 4%
  • Extra Stop Sign Fund = 3%
  • Chalk/Graffiti Cleanup Fund = 3%
  • Sand Creek Remediation Fund = 1%
  • Stapleton Art Fund = 1%
  • Affordable Housing Fund = 0%
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    1. I take strong issue with Mr. Erickson’s comments. I don’t care if they call us “special”, “extraordinary” or “superior” I don’t think we should be paying higher taxes at all. Especially for killing prairie dogs–weren’t they here first?

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