Radio campaign begins to stop plastic bag ban, bag tax

Taxpayer Association of Oregon Takes to the Air in Fight Against Painful Grocery Tax
— Statewide Radio Campaign Highlights Attempt by Politicians
To Censor Controversial Tax Proposal

Salem, OR – February 18, 2011 – Today the Taxpayer Association of Oregon, a leading advocate for sensible fiscal policy, released details surrounding a new radio campaign opposing Senate Bill 536, also known as the grocery bag tax. The radio campaign, which will run statewide beginning February 22, focuses on the efforts of the bill’s sponsor to censor public hearings and conceal the true nature of the tax measure.

“At a time when we have double digit unemployment and real problems facing our state, the last thing Oregonians need is a tax on their groceries,” said Jason Williams, founder of the Taxpayer Association of Oregon. “We can’t stand by while our elected officials are taking money that taxpayers would use for food and giving it to big businesses. We will fight this tax to the end.”

Senate Bill 536 seeks to ban plastic bags and charge a nickel for every paper bag used at the checkout. The funds generated from the grocery tax would go directly to the grocers in the private sector. The Cascade Policy Institute and Americans for Tax Reform have joined with the Taxpayer Association of Oregon in opposing the tax, which will lead to greater unemployment in Oregon.

To date, no other state in the nation has passed this type of extreme measure. Legislators have packaged the tax as a misguided environmental measure to combat litter. They are hoping to force shoppers to stop using paper or plastic and begin using expensive reusable bags, many of which are manufactured in China and have been shown to contain harmful levels of lead, prompting inquiry by federal officials.

The text of the radio is included below.

“Disagree” Radio Ad (:60)

Voice Over:

There’s a debate in Oregon over the proposed plastic bag ban…

And the millions in new taxes it calls for.

The bill’s sponsor says banning plastic bags, then charging consumers 5 cents per paper bag isn’t a tax.
Independent groups disagree.

We at the Taxpayer Association of Oregon say it’s exactly that – a tax.

Americans for Tax Reform agrees, estimating the tax will cost Oregon families over $6 million a year.

The Cascade Policy Institute says the new tax will eliminate hundreds of Oregon jobs and result in lower wages.

Oregonians can’t afford more economic pain and higher taxes.

With staggering unemployment, budget shortfalls and struggling schools, Oregon’s legislators need to deal with important issues.

Tell your legislators NO to higher taxes.

NO on Senate Bill 536 – the plastic bag ban.

Tell them to fix Oregon’s real problems.

Paid for by the Taxpayer Association of Oregon.