David Rechberger; Nicollette Munson; Rolf Munson; Laurel Hyde Boni; Dinah McKay; Donald Sherwood; William Swafford, Jr.; Marilyn Kepes; Donald Wrege; and Douglas Johnson, Plaintiffs-Appellants,
Boulder County Board of County Commissioners and Boulder County Housing Authority, Defendants-Appellees.
Boulder County District Court No. 17CV30818 Honorable Nancy
W. Salomone, Judge.
Chipman Glasser, LLC, David S. Chipman, John M. Bowlin,
Denver, Colorado, for Plaintiffs-Appellants.
Benjamin Pearlman, County Attorney, David Hughes, Deputy
County Attorney, Catherine Ruhland, Assistant County
Attorney, Boulder, Colorado, for Defendants-Appellees.
1 Plaintiffs David Rechberger, Nicollette Munson, Rolf
Munson, Laurel Hyde Boni, Dinah McKay, Donald Sherwood,
William Swafford, Jr., Marilyn Kepes, Donald Wrege, and
Douglas Johnson appeal the district court's order
dismissing their complaint against defendants, the Boulder
County Board of County Commissioners (the County) and the
Boulder County Housing Authority (BCHA), for lack of
jurisdiction and failure to state a claim upon which relief
could be granted. We affirm.
2 Plaintiffs alleged that the County reneged on promises it
made in a 1993 campaign to solicit support for a referred
ballot measure raising taxes for the purchase and maintenance
of "open space" around their community.
3 In their complaint, plaintiffs alleged that
• They reside or resided on taxable real property they
own or owned in the Gunbarrel Public Improvement District
(GPID), which was created in 1993 via a County resolution for
the purpose of "provid[ing] for the acquisition,
construction, and installation of open space areas and public
• The Board of Directors of the GPID - which comprises
the same members as the County - called a special election in
1993 to raise, over eleven years, an additional $2.535
million in property taxes to purchase land and dedicate it as
"open space" off limits to residential development.
• The 1993 Boulder County Election Notice accompanying
the proposed tax increase included a statement that
"[t]he Boulder County Commissioners have indicated that,
subject to the passage of this issue and the County Open
Space tax, the County will provide a matching contribution
towards open space purchase within the [GPID] up to a maximum
of $1, 900, 000."
• Similarly, a campaign flyer, authored by the County
and others, noted, with respect to a proposed increase in the
Boulder County Sales Tax, that the additional "funds
would provide the 50% match that the County Commissioners
have promised to support Gunbarrel's Open Space ballot
item. If this item passes, Gunbarrel residents will directly
see the benefits in open space purchased within Gunbarrel -
to the tune of or about $1.9 million dollars."
• By these statements, the County "induced electors
to tax themselves by committing to match the funds generated
by the Gunbarrel residents up to $1.9 million."
• After "GPID electors passed the proposed tax
increases," the County authorized spending over $3.6
million for the purchase of 256 acres of public open ...