Advancement in northern Colorado is coupled with inaccurate political ad – Loveland Reporter-Herald

A Loveland nonprofit says it is supporting a political ad that falsely attributes inaccurate statements about Mayor Jacki Marsh to an article published by the Reporter-Herald.

In an advertisement paid for by Advancing Northern Colorado and posted on October 9 on Facebook, the organization states in part, “Jacki Marsh wants YOU to pay his 700% salary increase to $ 54,388 as mayor. Did you get a 700% pay raise during the pandemic? “

An image included with the ad is associated with the text “700% SALARY INCREASE FOR MAYOR MARSH – REPORTER HERALD, 2.3.21”. The announcement also links to an HR article posted online Feb. 3 that describes a discussion among board members about increasing board compensation.

The February 3 article does not include the 700% figure mentioned in the ad. Tom Lucero, who is listed as the organization’s registered agent in documents filed with the Colorado Secretary of State, was unable to explain on Wednesday how the 700% figure was reached, but said it reflected a salary increase for council members proposed by Marsh as it was. described in the article RH.

“We think we are 100% right,” Lucero said. “We were following what you wrote. “

Screenshot by Max Levy / Loveland Reporter-Herald

A paid Facebook ad by Loveland-based nonprofit Advancing Northern Colorado claims Mayor Jacki Marsh has expressed interest in a 700% pay rise. The ad included a link to a Feb. 3 article in the Reporter-Herald that does not include the figure or such statement from Marsh.

The article reads in part:

“Marsh said she would argue that compensation is tied to the region’s median income – more specifically, the median income of men. According to the US Census Bureau, between 2015 and 2019, the average Loveland man working full time earned $ 54,338, while the average woman earned $ 44,032, about 81% of what men earn.

“A scale of 50% to 55% to 60% suggested by Marsh for councilors, the pro-mayor and the mayor would therefore equate to monthly payments of approximately $ 2,264, $ 2,490 and $ 2,717 for members of the advice at each position.

Councilors currently earn $ 600 per month for their service, while the pro tem mayor, Don Overcash, earns $ 800 per month, and the mayor earns $ 1,000 per month.

Lucero first said there were “two ways” of interpreting the language of the article, but then said he “very clearly” supported the claims made in the ad.

“We have asked several election lawyers to review it, and that is what it says very clearly,” Lucero said.

Using census figures included in the article, Marsh’s tentative proposal to pay the mayor 60% of the region’s median income for men would translate into a salary of $ 32,603. An increase in the current annual salary of $ 12,000 to $ 32,603 ​​represents an increase of approximately 172%.

Lucero also said that Advanced Northern Colorado did not review any recording of the February 2 meeting, when Marsh made the statements referenced in the article, but instead relied on his interpretation of the February 3 article. .

Marsh said at the meeting that “it would seem reasonable that we would take the median salary at Loveland for men, for men, and we would do a percentage” and that “that can certainly be discussed and determined, but 50% of the median male salary would go for council members, 55% for the mayor pro tem and 60% for the mayor.

When reached for comment on Tuesday, Marsh insisted the announcement does not accurately reflect her comments from February or her stance on board increases.

“How did they get 700%? She asked. “It’s clear that I explained why I wanted to do this, because it would allow more people to run for office. … In February, I had no intention of running for office.

She had argued that increasing council members’ salaries would make the position more accessible to working class residents and others.

“I used my own business as an example,” she said. “In order for me to do everything I do as mayor, I had to hire people to run my store in my absence. … And you have parents who have children who would need to find daycare.

Marsh also pointed out that the city’s charter prohibits council members from receiving a raise voted on by the group until they are re-elected for another term.

Advancing Northern Colorado is registered with the State of Colorado as a not-for-profit corporation. In addition to Lucero, he’s associated with Katie Kennedy, who has filed registration documents for the group with the state and has at least a decade of filing experience on behalf of conservative political groups across Colorado. .

Advancing Northern Colorado has reported independent spending at least three times to the Loveland City Clerk’s Office during this election cycle – in a report filed Oct. 8, he described himself as supporting mayoral candidate Overcash and s’ opposing Marsh’s reelection bid – although City Clerk Delynn Coldiron said in a public October 11 email that the nonprofit “has no contribution limits or requirements for report under the city charter, unless you contribute to a committee of candidates. “

The reports to Coldiron did not include any information on the sources of its funding. Lucero did not respond when asked if the group would be comfortable sharing information about their funders, except to say that they “are grateful for the generous support of so many in the north. Colorado”.

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