By Taxpayers Association of Oregon
Oregon Governor Tina Kotek released a budget this month. It was more of a wish list since the budget required more money spent than what was coming in. Taxes were not highlighted, which means they will come later.
• Kotek has a billion dollars in new spending just on the issue of housing alone. That includes $87 million for government to start paying people’s rent.
• Lawmakers want a quarter billion dollar package for the semi-conductor industry.
• Just in the past few weeks the estimated cost to fix our bridges went from $4 billion to $6 billion.
• The education lobby wants a $1 billion budget increase, even though they lost 36,000 students.
• Kotek is trying to grow the health care budget by 36%.
• ODOT plans to spend $100 million on building electric vehicle charging stations for the comfort convenience of the few (mostly) high income Oregonians who own electric vehicles (which cost on average $60,000).
• Lawmaker seek to create new tax credits which will hinder state revenue. Example: $1,200 rebate for electric bikes.
• Lawmakers held hearings on a bill that could pull state pension investments from energy companies (some of the highest preforming an best investment return industries). This may mean Oregon will lose tens of millions on their investments to pay government pension. Taxes will have to go up to make the difference.
• One bill would unload monthly “unrestricted” tax cash to poor as a new form of cash benefits.
• Also, the Government Pension System (PERS) is $24 billion in debt. Politicians have used the past decade of record-breaking stock market growth to keep adding to the cost of PERS instead of making it sustainable for when the economy is more normal. Now that state economists predict a recession in 2023, investment returns will decline but obligations must be paid, so taxes will be called upon to be raised.
By setting budget levels so high and creating so many new government program and expenses, politicians are setting taxpayers up for many big tax increases. How else can you pay just for half of these expenses?
Stay tuned for more.
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