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Truth Check: Kennedy commercial gets scrutinized

DENVER — The Truth Check team has looked at advertisements from gubernatorial candidates Mitchell, Johnston, Polis and Lynne. Now it is time for the Truth Check team to look at former State Treasurer Cary Kennedy and her new advertisement for her run for Governor.

Throughout the 2018 election season, the FOX31 Problem Solvers will be examining the commercials to see what is honest and what is misleading. See some of our previous “Truth Check” segments here.

You can also Read our criteria and standards.

Claim No. 1

Kennedy held positions in the community, local and state government

Exact quote in ad: “I was a community activist, Denver CFO, and State Treasurer"

Verdict: TRUE

Reason: Kennedy helped pass Amendment 23 -- an education spending boost initiative while serving as a community activist. She was also elected treasurer in 2006. After losing to Walker Stapleton in 2010, Kennedy was appointed Chief Financial Officer for the City of Denver by Mayor Hancock in 2011.

Claim No. 2

Kennedy created a state program aimed at rebuilding public schools

Exact quote in ad: “I'm most proud of creating the program that rebuilt hundreds of Colorado Schools"

Verdict: NOT EXACTLY

Reason: The Truth Check team agrees Kennedy played a major role in creating the BEST program or the Build Excellent Schools Today Act. However, her commercial implies she unilaterally created the program out of the Treasurer's Office. In truth, the bill had to be passed out of the General Assembly where there was debate, amendments and plenty of sponsors. 

The Truth Check team conducted interviews with bill sponsors at that time who said Kennedy helped create the funding mechanism that allowed the bill to make sense financially. Kennedy's team cites news articles referring to her as a "Chief Architect" for reasons behind the quote in the commercial. 

Since that time, the bill has rebuilt or remodeled hundreds of schools according to the Colorado Department of Education. 

The BEST program relies on a combination of money to create grants for schools, including marijuana money. The marijuana funding mechanism was added after Kennedy was Treasurer.

 

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