Salem, Oregon — Common Sense For Oregon today launched a statewide radio campaign highlighting examples of excessive government spending in Oregon. The radio spot provides Oregonians with concrete evidence that waste in state government is still prevalent. “The Governor and lawmakers have been telling the people of Oregon that they need more money, which means they want higher taxes,” said Ross Day, executive director of Common Sense For Oregon, “this campaign will provide Oregonians with hard evidence that Oregon’s politicians have a spending problem, not a revenue problem.”
Common Sense For Oregon discovered that $773,000 of taxpayer dollars were spent in the 2007-2009 budget cycle on free soda pop for prisoners. “At a time when schools are cutting school days, services to our society’s most vulnerable are being cut, and Oregon’s unemployment is near record highs, we are providing prisoners with free soda pop!”, said Day.
“We encourage everyone, especially well-intended public employees, who see waste first hand, to let us know. Raising taxes without cutting outrageous spending hurts all of us,” Day added.
The $773,000 for free soda pop earned the Department of Corrections the first Oregon Golden Fleece Award given by Common Sense For Oregon.
Common Sense For Oregon has set up an anonymous, toll-free tip line for citizens to call and nominate examples of government waste. The telephone number is 1-887-UFLEECE. Or, citizens can go to www.commonsensefororegon.org and leave an anonymous message on that website.
The Oregon Golden Fleece Award is modeled after the Golden Fleece Award created by the late Senator William Proxmire (D-WI), which exposed examples of wasteful government spending in the national budget. Senator Proxmire’s Golden Fleece Award drew national acclaim and received thousands of tips – a large number were actually from employees of the federal government.
The Oregon Golden Fleece Award will be awarded on a monthly basis to the person, politician or government agency responsible for the most notorious — and wasteful — example of spending highlighted in the previous month.
Common Sense For Oregon is an Oregon non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to promoting common sense solutions to the issues important to Oregonians.