Opponents of Lakewood’s slow-growth measure raised 38 times the money backers did — and still lost

Opponents of a Lakewood ballot measure to limit new home construction in Colorado’s fifth-largest city raised 38 times more in campaign contributions than backers of Question 200 — $573,686 versus $15,071.

The July ballot measure, which allows no more than 1% annual growth in new housing stock, nonetheless won by 53% to 47%.

The final fundraising totals reflect money raised by the sides in the three months or so leading up to the special election.

With 16,929 votes cast against Question 200, the half-dozen issue committees set up to defeat the measure collected $33.89 per “no” vote, while the prevailing side, which received 18,792 votes, tallied 80 cents per “yes” vote.

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Of the more than half a million dollars collected by the anti-200 contingent, more than a third came from a single $200,000 contribution from the National Association of Realtors.

Question 200 endured nearly two years of legal challenges trying to keep it from the ballot, but a judge in the last week of 2018 dismissed all of those objections, clearing the way for the election.

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