Jan. 26 – Oregon Ballot Measure 66 and 67
The first ballot measure to be covered by this blog is a complicated one – and quite meaningful for both sides of the issue. On January 26, Oregon voters will decide whether to raise taxes on wealthy citizens in order to shore up the state budget and pay for services. This comes after these tax increases were passed in the state legislature and signed by Governor Ted Kulongoski.
Ballot Measure 66
The text of the measure is as follows:
Raises tax on household income at and above $250,000 (and $125,000 for individual filers). Reduces income taxes on unemployment benefits in 2009. Provides funds currently budgeted for education, health care, public safety, other services
A yes vote on the measure would approve this tax proposal. Specifics of this approval include:
- For those households making between 250,000 and 500,000 dollars a year, the tax rate would increase by 1.8%. For those households making over 500,000 a year, the tax rate would go up 2.0%.
- It would eliminates income taxes on the first $2,400 of unemployment benefits received in 2009.
- Also would raise an estimated $472 million to provide fund for education, health care, public safety, other services
A no vote would reject all of the above and would send legislators back to the drawing board, probably ensuring service cuts in order to shore up the budget.
The text of this measure reads:
Raises $10 corporate minimum tax, business minimum tax, corporate profits tax. Provides currently budgeted for education, health care, public safety, other services.
Right now, a law from 1931 mandates that businesses pay a tax of $10 every year. This applies to all corporations big or small. This bill would update the law so that:
- S corporations and partnerships (defined as corporations with shareholders – independent contractors and consultants are not included) will have to pay a $150 a year tax while businesses with over $500,000 in Oregon revenue would pay a tax of .1%. So, for a business making one million dollars of revenue, it would pay $1,000.
- Profit taxes for large business would be raised by 1.3%
- Raises estimated $255 million to provide funds currently budgeted for education, health care, public safety, other services.
This would reject all the above changes and force legislators to come up with ways to raise the $255 million somewhere else.