DENVER
03/21/2011 03:35 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute Withdraws Tax-Increase Initiatives

The Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute withdrew a series of ballot initiatives on Monday aimed at establishing a graduated income tax.

In early February, the a progressive organization filed 6 versions of a ballot measure that would make Colorado's currently-flat state income tax graduated. Some would also have raised the corporate income tax in Colorado. On Monday, the organization's director said in a statement that there was insufficient support to take any of the measures to the ballot.

"As much as we believe Colorado needs swift action to address its fiscal challenges and stop the cycle of damaging cuts to our public services, these measures were not able to gather the broad support needed to move to the ballot in 2011," said Carol Hedges, Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute Director.

The group estimates that the initiatives would add an additional $1.5 billion to Colorado's general fund. The legislature is currently debating ways to fill a massive budget deficit for the 2011-2012 fiscal year. Earlier this year, Governor Hickenlooper proposed $375 million in additional cuts to K-12 education, among other controversial measures to balance the budget.

"Experts from across the political spectrum understand our state's fiscal mess is not temporary or just a result of an economic downturn - it's structural, and we need to make fundamental shifts in how we fund public services," Hedges said in Monday's statement.

On Friday, Jon Caldara, director of the libertarian Independence Institute, filed a ballot initiative of his own that would ask voters to cut taxes, claiming he was "inspired" by the Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute's efforts to raise them