Senator Ted Ferrioli: Deadbeats evade taxes

Deadbeats evade taxes; Oregon families and businesses foot the bill
State Senator Ted Ferrioli,

Salem, OR — According to an audit performed by the Secretary of State and highlighted by The Oregonian, more than 66,000 federal income tax filers ignored paying state income taxes in 2007, costing the state more than $100 million. Meanwhile, Oregon businesses and families are now suffering the affect of increased taxes designed to pay for supposed revenue shortfalls.

“It seems as though Democrat leadership would rather raise taxes on those who already pay than collect taxes from those who owe,” said Senate Republican Leader Ted Ferrioli (R-John Day). “In other words, the government is enabling the tax cheats, but sticking struggling Oregon families and businesses with higher tax rates.”

The audit found that state tax collectors failed to cross check state tax data with federal tax data, an easy way to discover the individuals who are ignoring Oregon taxes. Department of Revenue officials estimate that the difference between what taxpayers owe the state and what is collected was at least $1.2 billion in 2006.

“This is the type of mindless agency action that makes taxpayers angry and builds distrust in government,” said Ferrioli. “Democrat leadership cries poverty and asks Oregonians for more of their hard earned money. And then we learn that much of the shortfall is a result of money leaking out of state government, like air leaking out from an old tire.”

Democrats raised more than $2 billion in new taxes and fees during the 2009 legislative session, claiming there simply wasn’t enough revenue to maintain government spending. In reality, Democrats increased spending by $4 billion over the last budget cycle. Economists have estimated that a portion of the $2 billion in higher taxes and fees will result in a loss of 70,000 Oregon jobs.