• APEF Board Member Roles and Responsibilities:
In November, 2012, voters within the City of Aspen approved a 0.3% tax increase for the purpose of supporting public K-12 education in the Aspen School District. Voters approved an extension of the tax in November 2016. Revenues from this tax total approximately $2 million per year and fill the financing gap between the amount of funds that the state is required to provide the district annually and the amount that it actually provides.
The Aspen Public Education Fund was formed to act as the recipient and disburser of the designated sales tax revenues. As a Colorado non-profit corporation, the Fund operates exclusively for educational and charitable purposes pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The Fund is governed by a 7-person Board of Directors.
APEF was established as an instrument for collecting and disbursing sales tax revenues from the City. It does not receive or transfer gifts or donations intended for the District. The Board meets twice yearly to review the District’s grant requests pursuant to the amount of projected income realized by the annual sales tax. The ballot language approved by the voters limits the grants to five areas: Programs; Technology; Special Education; Professional Development; and, the Recruitment, Training and Retention of Staff.
The APEF Board exists to serve only in an oversight role as it relates to accountability of monies earned through the 0.3% tax allocation. The Board is prohibited from unilaterally adding any item to the District’s list of grant requests or from distributing proceeds for any item not requested by the District. It does review financial information to ensure that the district’s grant expenditures are in the areas approved by the voters and are not unreasonable. It does not review or comment on district policies, curriculum, administration, alternative funding mechanisms, and so forth.