by Dan Lucas
Oregon’s controversial tax increases, Measures 66 & 67, are in the news again. The Legislature will begin meeting next week and there are a number of efforts underway to mitigate the damage done by the tax increases, or even to repeal them altogether. Public employee unions and their allies are working to maintain the deceptions that got Oregonians to vote for the taxes in the first place, including a recent opinion piece in the Oregonian.
More and more Oregonians seem to be getting that the tax increases are driving businesses out of Oregon, but there are still some people who think it was just about “$10”.
Measure 67 wasn’t just about raising the minimum tax on corporations from $10 to $150.
If the Measure 67 tax increase had truly been only from $10 to $150, it would have only raised $27 million, but M67 was designed to raise $262 million. Where would the other $235 million come from?
The answer is that M67 brought in SIX new taxes and fees totaling $262 million. One of the SIX new taxes and fees is costing businesses up to $100,000 a year, even if they don’t make a profit; even if they lose money. The taxes are so big & complex that the Department of Revenue had to add more than 7 new employees just to collect them.
Businesses were already paying their fair share & they pay a LOT more taxes & fees than just Oregon income tax – including a third of the state taxes and half of local taxes (mainly property taxes).
Oregon’s December unemployment rate was 10.6%. Oregon has now had two full years of unemployment over 10%. We need to start valuing Oregon’s employers – they are the ones who can start creating jobs and help the many Oregonians who are looking for work.
Full analysis of Measure66 and -Measure 67 from December 2009