Republicans offer alternative stimulus proposal

Republicans offer alternative stimulus proposal to President Courtney
By Senate GOP,

“Oregonians are hurting, they need help paying for milk, heat, food, rent”

Salem, OR — Senate Republicans met with Senate President Peter Courtney (D-Salem) Friday morning to offer an economic stimulus proposal designed to immediately put money back into Oregonians’ pockets and create long-term, lasting jobs. The plan would simply give Oregonians part of their tax refunds now, rather than next year. Republicans are offering an opportunity to forge a plan that involves key investments in needed infrastructure and some financial relief for Oregonians.

“Oregonians are hurting as they face reduced hours and record unemployment; they need help,” said Senator Brian Boquist (R-Dallas). “Every extra dollar in the average Oregonians’ paycheck helps pay for winter coats, school books, the heat bill or rent. This plan puts money back into their pockets and back into the economy where it will create permanent, local jobs.”

The plan proposes a reduction to the income tax withholding tables that will put more money back into every Oregon employees’ paycheck. By reducing tax withholdings immediately, $100 million will be put directly into the Oregon economy over the next 6 months to help create jobs. It will also serve to increase consumer confidence, a crucial key to economic recovery. The plan will cost $50 million this budget cycle, which Republicans propose paying for by rescinding part of last year’s $358 million in pay increases the Governor handed out to state employees.

Republicans also proposed an emergency declaration for $1 billion in bonded projects scheduled to be sold over the next 6 months so that the projects they fund can be started quickly. The projects, already planned and authorized, will create thousands of jobs and can be accelerated by removing bureaucracy and red tape so that economic stimulus can be created immediately.

“We would like Senate Democrats to work with us to craft a stimulus package that does more than simply go on a borrowing binge which only puts Oregonians to work for a few weeks. Instead of creating busy work, let’s create lasting jobs,” said Senator Ted Ferrioli (R-John Day). “We are open to bonding that might allow us to invest in careful, thoughtful investments in key infrastructure for the future.”

Republicans, who learned of Courtney’s borrowing plan only last week, are saying “President Obama has set a commendable example of how to construct a bi-partisan stimulus package that includes all parties and perspectives using a “go slow” approach at the front end. Obama’s stimulus proposal has brought Republicans and Democrats to the table and includes both infrastructure investments and tax relief. Republicans are calling on Courtney to follow Obama’s example and include Republicans in the creation of a state stimulus package.”

The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) echoed the views of many economists who say the most effective way to stimulate the economy is to provide money either through tax cuts or direct payments.

  • Rick Hickey

    Wouldn’t the 1,000’s of workers who are not currently paying any taxes being required to pay help generate much needed revenue?

    Example, Our new A.G. just caught an Illegal Alien, who was previously Deported, whom came back to America and of course Oregon, to open several construction companies and cheat us out of at least $8 million in payroll taxes and millions more in Workers Comp.

    If there are only 50 other Illegal’s like him, out of tens of 1,000’s here in OR., who are doing the same, that is at least $400 million in lost revenue.

    Plus all the legitimate companies losing biz by being forced to compete with Criminals would be rewarded for following the rule of law, instead of being punished as they are now.

    E-Verify mandatory would help this and a Bill to make this happen will be in Committee soon. So will the Immersion Bill being introduced soon.

    I hope my Republican friends will support this as I know Democrats who do.

    Add the $200 Million/yr. we waste on the 80% Failure misnamed Bilingual education and there’s $600 million p/yr. back in the budget.

    The Oregonian has a sob story of Illegal’s who are getting Food stamps today. If they couldn’t get a job, they would leave.

    Illegal’s pay taxes? Not. In Colorado Amelia’s Tax prep and Translation service got caught helping 1,300 Illegal’s get $2.7 Million in refunds. How many of these cases are happening here in Oregon?

    And Yes Oregon Supreme’s decided a long time ago that Illegal’s can file un-employment claims.

  • Wayne Brady

    If you want to get the economy going again, reduce or eliminate corporate income taxes and make it permanent. You will not only stimulate business activity from businesses currently in Oregon but attract businesses to Oregon.

    Businesses will react to permanent changes in the marginal rate. Temporary refunds or other gimicks do not lead to investment and hiring.

    The public works spending will come too late to help us in this recession and the haste to put together this stimulus plan will lead to wasteful spending.

  • Reason

    There is 28 billion in the PERS account, the Oregon state government should borrow what it needs to get through these hard times.

    Once the economy comes around they could pay back the loans with a modest interest rate. We are all in this together!

    • Jerry

      Wow – what a great idea.
      Why not just spend it all now and then worry later about paying it all back? That’ a lot of loot that could do a lot of good for the state and its peoples.

    • eagle eye

      The PERS account is required by law to be run in the best interest of the beneficiaries i.e. PERS members. (This also happens to be in the best interests of the state, because the state has obligations to the public employees, it behooves the state to run PERS in as financially sound a manner as possible.)

      Why should PERS loan money to the state of Oregon, especially for a “modest” interest rate?

    • Rupert in Springfield

      Damn good idea!

      This is the way it works with Social Security, why not PERS?

      SS beneficiaries take as a given that the program lies to them. why its even printed on the little statement of benefits one gets from time to time.

      Hark! I have one right here:

      “Your estimated benefits are based on current law. Congress has made changes to the law in the past and can do so at any time. The law governing benefit amounts may change because, by 2041, the payroll taxes collected will be enough to pay only 78 percent of current benefits”

      I think we should take the same approach with PERS. Borrow from the fund and pass a law canceling the guaranteed 8%, which is especially outrageous in the current economic situation. Shifting to a lower rate which is more in keeping with what everyone else is enduring seems sensible and would save the state quite a bit of money.

      Seems to work well for everyone else. I remember when they raised the retirement age on me after I was already working. Not a lot new here in the concept of government retirement changes. Given the coverage of PERS, I doubt there is a lot of public sympathy for some of the outrageous benefits some are getting.

      Why should taxpayers support this ridiculous system?