Threats to take your kicker tax refund renewed

dog-logo-stampThreats to take your kicker tax refund renewed.
By Taxpayer Association of Oregon

Last week’s Oregon Supreme Court ruling over government pensions (PERS) has exploded the budget debate and it will lead to a giant money grab to steal you Kicker Tax Refund. The Supreme Court ruled that lawmakers cannot trim any costs from state government’s $16 billion retirement debt hole.  The court ruling means an immediate $358 million hit in the next state budget cycle.

The forecasted Kicker refund is about $379 million.   This $379 million is over-collected government funds that by law must be returned to the people like you and me.   Now this $379 million is the massive target of politicians who wish to steal it.

The Taxpayer Association of Oregon has been testifying and lobbying against SJR 14 which would steal part of the people’s kicker tax refund and put it into a government slush fund. Make no mistake, this ‘Kicker Theft’ Senate Bill is in play. It has had a hearing. It can move out anytime.

We must remember, the only reason why state government found itself with an over-collected $379 million is because Oregon’s economy is improving after a painful season. Why punish success by stealing our money?   A recovering business climate and Oregonians hiring more workers is the ANSWER to our budget problems, not the problem to exploit.

The Kicker Tax Refund to taxpayers like you and I could be $200, $300 or even as high as $600 per person. This depends on how much over-collected funds comes in the next few weeks to complete the budget cycle and the final determination of whether the Kicker will kick.

You can help protect your kicker by call your lawmaker toll-free at 1-800-332-2313 supporting our lobby efforts with a donation here.

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Posted by at 07:46 | Posted in Uncategorized | 25 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Bob Clark

    We saw the Oregon economy add over $1 billion dollars to state government general fund revenues for this current biennium, and this despite a national economy growing in starts and fits averaging significantly less than Federal Reserve estimates of economic potential.

    So, the state should most definitely have enough growth in general fund revenues by the next biennium to meet the deficit caused by the Supreme Court decision. But as Dems are fond to think and mutter to themselves: Don’t waste an opportunity presented by a new crisis to expand taxation and government.

  • guest

    The inSalem asylum needs to be scrubbed with Mr. Clean-sers and rebooted sans PERSnatchers and Dem udder succors scurrilously lip locking on the drawing board.

  • Jonathan

    I don’t have much use for the Oregon kicker myself — it is one of the silliest tax laws I’ve ever encountered — but if the Republicans and their allies want to avoid the service cuts that will result from the (proper, in my opinion) decision on PERS — they will need either to come up with more money or find real efficiencies in state government, probably about 5% of the total budget. This will involve taking on some entrenched interests in their own districts. Anyone for reducing administrative bloat in schools? Reducing high expenses of Oregon public safety? How about inefficiencies in rural and urban road maintenance and construction?

    • guest

      As a starter, howl about Red dogging the State DEMographic Supremes officiating in the PERSnatchers League; pawning junk yard canines over-protecting a god awful tumultuous mell of a hess?

    • thevillageidiot

      don’t increase taxes that just covers up the primary drives of the overspending and where the money goes. make drastic cuts everywhere to make PERS solvent. This will wake people up to where the money goes and who it benefits. such as the likes of Jonathan.

      • Jonathan

        you are aptly self-named.

        • .

          Whap a maroon that be Jonatongue

      • Eric Blair

        That kinda seems like cutting off your nose to spite your face.

    • oregongrown

      Make the cuts. Start the layoffs. I don’t care. But do not come back screaming to working Oregonians for more! I am sick of it. We have the dumbest tools in office that have sold us out. The fact that so many of the abuses in PERS have even been spawned by these lowlifes is hard to believe: Money Match, Spiking, Double Dipping, Paying taxes for these tax exempt protected class is obscene. They had a chance to right the wrong that is PERS Tier 1, but didn’t.

      So make the cuts everywhere. I am sick of hearing “it’s for the kids” when every single new tax dollar is going to PERS.

      • guest


  • thevillageidiot

    there seems to be a conflict of interest. including the legislators. the judges do not want to see their retirement cut. Since they have the final determination of the PERS debate and can prevent any decrease then they will. the fox guarding the henhouse.

    • Eric Blair

      Do you seriously believe that the results of the decision would have been different if the judges weren’t covered by PERS? On what grounds would judges throw out legal contract language?

      • oregongrown

        Have you ever served on a jury? People that serve on juries can excuse themselves if they will benefit by the decision.

        That’s EXACTLY what is happening with PERS judges deciding PERS decisions. It is a HUGE conflict of interest. AND many other states have enacted public retirements, one being Rhode Island. After Central Fall Rhode Island went bankrupt, Gina Raimondo, the Treasurer enacted big changed to BOTH existing retirees and those not yet retired. She is NOW the governor of Rhode Island, and she is a Democrat.

        So there are many other states that don’t think it’s right to bankrupt the citizens because their own government has been greed, stupid and completely sold out their citizens. The math in PERS is so clear. How stupid do these so-called leaders have to be to ignore simple math and realty and let an entire group of retirees make out like bandits and get retirements based on high stock market returns for a couple of years, and let the taxpayers make up the shortfall when the market goes down. Politicians made promises they could never keep to get elected and stay in office and either were too stupid (and it’s hard to believe they were that stupid) or they didn’t care. The old IGB, YBG kicked in. (I’ll Be Gone, You’ll Be Gone) by the time the bill comes due.

        We owe this entire PERS mess to Roberts, Kitzhaber, Kulongosky, in power over the last 25 years. They spawned deal (called contracts) after deal that sweetened the PERS pie to heights beyond anything that resembles reality. It is swindle on all working Oregonians–In the PRIVATE sector.

    • Jonathan

      Nobody who understands what constitutes a judicial conflict of interest is claiming there was one — not even people who strongly backed the PERS cuts.

      And, the decision was UNANIMOUS. Do you really think that would have happened if there was any serious question about the illegality of the cuts? It was very clear and predictable from prior case law what the outcome was going to be.

      • .

        Public ‘organized’ crime run amok ad infinitum.

        • oregongrown

          Start the cuts. The PERS pie has got to give the majority of money to 86% of the PERS retirees. There is not near enough money for the current workforce. Start the cuts, start the layoffs. Should have been done long ago.

      • HBguy

        I actually think it’s more accurate to say that everyone recognized that there was an actual conflict of interest, but the rule of necessity applied, in that there was no legal way to litigate the case and not to have a conflict. Since all judges are PERS and there us no legal alternative for any other body to act as the judicial branch to review the legislation

  • HBguy

    Freezing the salaries of anyone hired before 2003 would not only save some money, it would also reduce the future PERS costs since retirement is based on the average of the last three years of salary. And, it would be more fair to the Tier III employees as we could focus the salary increases on them and their total compensation would eventually be more in line with the Tier I and II employees.
    If the pre 2003 employees don’t like it….they can quit and find better paying jobs.

    • Jonathan

      If they don’t like it … they might also sue and win.

      But I suspect that a lot of what you suggest is already done — informally — especially with professional staff.

      • HBguy

        It would have to be done through contract negotiations when unions are involved.

    • Eric Blair

      It will be difficult to find any of the unions willing to bargain and accept such a proposal. How long would you freeze salaries for? Until retirement?

      Someone takes a public sector job at age 20 in 2002. That means, if this is a life-time freeze, that they will not get a raise in their job for 31 years if they retire at age 64. Keep in mind that they only were available for Tier II for one year.

      • HBguy

        I agree unions would not agree to it, until the tier III employees became a majority. Then they may be very amenable to the suggestion. And the freeze would only last as long as necessary to make the total compensation paid to Tier III and the Tier I and II employees proportional. Basically, the equation would shift some of the total compensation from tiers one and two to tier three. I’d even say that owe wouldn’t have to negotiate in such a way that would save current compensation. The benefits to the taxpayer would be in reducing the unfounded liability, reduce PERS rates for employers, and increase in salaries for younger public employees, perhaps attracting larger pools of candidates and more of our best and brightest.

  • oregongrown

    There is so much to say about the recent PERS court decision and the fact that they will want to keep OUR kicker and then scream for hundreds of millions more, to make up for BILLIONS owed to one PERS retirees segment, PERS Tier 1.

    If the Republicans are smart they will take this PERS decision and make it a huge campaign issue for the next governor’s election. It IS the Demcoratic party in Oregon that has screwed us out of billions through their complete swindle that is PERS Tier 1. So, we we lost that battle in the courts, but we should not lose our kicker, and this should be used in the election campaign.

    The screams for more money from the Democrats, with “Crisis in the schools” and “crisis this and crisis that” will come as the same time as the election. Except EVERY SINGLE NEW TAX DOLLAR WILL GO TO PERS. That is the message that needs to be drilled down with every campaign slogan.

    This election can be entirely different than the last because we have a Dem woman in office that wasn’t even elected. We have the PERS explosion and having gone over that PERS database we have an abundance of obscene examples of just how much of a swindle it is to make this issue front and center in the election.

    And the PERS Tier 1 crowd keeps saying ” a deal is a deal.” (I say “a swindle is a swindle.” ) But the same holds for the kicker. IT’S OURS. It’s law. And nothing should change that.

    We have to throw these Democrats out. They are crushing the working people of Oregon. The PERS Tier 1 group is right now 86% of the entire PERS Retirement amount and will be for the next 30-40 years. This court decision is huge.

    The fact that this miniscule reform of, JUST DECREASING THE INCREASE IN COLA’S and making out state PERS retirees pay their own taxes would have saved u 5+ BILLION, shows just what a monster PERS is. All under almost 30 years of Democratic governors.

    If the Republicans cannot take this horrendous decision and use it in the campaign for the highest office in Oregon, with a good candidate like Allen Alley, they need to give up.

    This is the campaign issue. And as far as the screams for more money, forget it. Ask the PERS Tier lowlifes to fund the shortfall. And start the layoffs. Make the cuts. We are sick of the big, bloated, greedy government in Oregon.

    • guest

      Bravo for oregongrown’s wise open alert.

  • MrBill

    Ferrengi Rule of Acquisition #1 says, “Once you have their money…never give it back!”

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