April 23: Tax Freedom Day comes early for the wrong reasons

Article by Jason Williams and Wayne Brady,

Taxpayers can celebrate that National Tax Freedom Day will celebrated three days earlier on April 23rd. That celebration may be short lived for Oregonians and Marion County area residents who are seeing more taxes on the horizon.

Tax Freedom Day is the theoretical day in which taxpayers have earned enough income to pay off their collective government tax burden as calculated by the Tax Foundation. Our freedom comes earlier in part to slower economic growth and a one-time federal stimulus check arriving in the mail soon.

Several local, state and federal taxes are being proposed that could dramatically increase our tax burden and push Tax Freedom Day into May.

Statewide, Oregonians are seeing three taxes being proposed by Governor Ted Kulongski that would have a serious impact on the family budget. Earlier this year the Governor showed consideration for a gas tax increase to be enacted in the 2009 Legislature. Raising gas taxes during economic trying times and record high gas prices is a recipe for economic disaster.

The Governor announced during his State of the State address the need to revisit the tobacco tax that voters just rejected by 60% last November. Having one of the nation’s highest cigarette taxes is not enough for some politicians. Neither is the fact that the state budget is growing by over 20%. There was enough budget room to fund government pork programs, but not the children’s programs that Kulongoski says is so important.

There is also talk of the Governor considering a statewide property tax. State Senator Ted Ferrioli was exposed to this trail idea while serving on the Governor’s Federal Forest and County Services Taskforce. Senator Ferrioli resigned as soon as the proposal was introduced.

Nationwide, taxpayers are looking at the Alternative Minimum Tax hitting thousands of new Oregonians next year. The dreaded AMT tax is expected to rise from 4 million taxpayers to 30 million taxpayers in the year 2009.

As we look to the advancements of Tax Freedom Day we must recognize that taxpayers still pay more in taxes than they do for food, clothing and shelter. We have a long ways to go. If we enact all of these local, state and national taxes, we will reverse our gains and increase the hardships on ordinary working taxpayers trying to get by.

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Posted by at 06:30 | Posted in Measure 37 | 7 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • John Fairplay

    It’s only 2 days earlier – it’s Leap Year.

    Not to mention all the local taxes that are being proposed. A day doesn’t go by without a link from your site to some news story of another $200 millon or $300 million local school bond election or some other huge tax hike. The total for November statewide will be in the billions.

    • dean

      How many tax complainers are planning to vote yes on the November Mannix measure that will increase our jail populations at a cost of 2-3 hundred million?

      • CRAWDUDE

        I actually wasn’t going to comment but you did ask a question. I will!

        Now, to your next question: No, I won’t vote for any tax increase, they’ll just have to figure out for themselves where to find the cash. Sorry, its the will of the people if it passes, democracy is grand 🙂

  • Jason W.

    This doesn’t include the near billion in proposed tax increases for Portland and quarter billion for Salem. While America’s tax Freedom Day may be temporarily easing into April, Oregon has its sights on Labor Day.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    In the end, when I start to think about the activities that the Governor and our beloved legislature seem to be engaged in, the first thing that springs to mind is the amount of time they seem to spend repackaging this or that new tax in a way to make it palatable to voters. This seems to be where 90% of the State governments energies are expended, packaging a new tax scheme and hoping the people will bite.

    The revisiting of the cigarette tax is a perfect example. When you cant get a cigarette tax to fly in a state like Oregon, especially when you wrap it in a “do it for the kids health care” box that really says something.

    Phishing is the other method used by government, especially at the federal level. The way this works is by sending you a phony tax bill, say reassessing your property way more than comparables, and hoping you just go along and pay it. The difference between this and a common criminal doing it is if you don’t bite the criminal moves along, with government you either have to pay or prove your innocence.

    Just last week a friend of mine got a bill in the mail “we have estimated you owe us a whole bunch of money for unpaid Social Security taxes, send us $180 a month for a real long time, if you do not start making payments in 10 days time, we will begin seizing your assets, including bank accounts and your house”

    Half a day off of work for her to go down and deal with this, show records and a “whoopsie, guess we were wrong” excuse.

    Excuse me? You just threatened to take everything someone owns based on fiat.

    Phishing, pure and simple. Had a private person been running this sort of scam, they would be in jail. With the government, they just move on to the next sucker.

    The fascinating thing is at the end of all their hard work, these clowns sit down and wonder why people aren’t in much of a mood to give government more money. I mean even a 10 year old child, who ran to mommy every day asking for money for a new toy would understand why mommy doesn’t look to him as the source of money management in the household.

    “But mommy, its not really a new X-Box, its an investment, in……..in my infrastructure of the TV……its a sound investment to keep me from needing to go out and add to Global Warming……..its an investment in sustainability….sustainability of fun mom…… do it for the kids mom, your kid………. mom?…………..mom?……………….MOM why are you walking away from me?


    We really don’t have much choice as far as Federal taxes go but we do as far as the bonds and local state taxes go. Just don’t vote for them!

  • Jaffe

    IS there not a Tax Freedom Day that includes state, federal and local?

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