Kulongoski singing a new tune on taxes

Governor Ted Kulongoski has been no enemy of tax increases. For example, he championed Measure 28 and Measure 30, the record income tax increases that Oregon voters handily defeated. The cigarette tax increase up on the ballot this November was the Governor’s idea. During last year’s campaign, the Governor called for elimination of corporate tax relief. The Governor even proposed a major increase in taxes on Oregon businesses this last session, which was only defeated thanks to the vigilance of Senator Frank Morse.

But in an article by Harry Esteve in yesterday’s Oregonian, the Governor has apparently seen the light when it comes to Oregon’s need for tax increases.

Oregon could have enough cash for years to come without a sales tax or dramatic restructuring of the way the state takes a chunk of your money, Gov. Ted Kulongoski says…

…Recently, Kulongoski says, he looked at state economic projections that made him think differently. The figures show steadily growing revenue from income taxes and state gambling machines, and a burgeoning savings account as well.

“The projections I’ve seen for economic growth — it meets the adequacy test,” the governor said.

That’s a large departure from the usual talking points that bemoan the lack of funding and general inadequacy of Oregon’s revenue system. At least for now, Oregon seems to have enough to pay for what it needs. Imagine that?