Oregon’s November Ballot: A 3% Corporate Tax Goes to the People — $750 Each

Though it’s not official, the backers of Initiative Petition 17 say they need just 117,173 signatures to get the measure on the November ballot. As of last week, they had 135,000 signatures and more are coming.

If it passes, the initiative will stick an additional 3% tax on the sales of all corporations with sales at, or above, $25 million a year. The money will then be given to the state’s residents with each person getting a $750 gift courtesy of the sponsors.

The sponsors call themselves the Oregon People’s Rebate.

Organizer Anna Martinez says voter approval has the program going into effect next January. Though it’s only $750, she says this will be good for individuals and families and help them buy groceries, pay their rent and pay for basic necessities.

This will put money back in the local economy. It will help small businesses,” she said. “Some people say, ‘Well it’s only $750.’ But that’s huge if you really need it.”

She said anything left over will be “used to provide additional funding for services for senior citizens, health care, public early childhood education and public kindergarten through grade 12 education.”

As expected, a counter-campaign will be put into effect as soon as it is officially attached to the November ballot. Business lobbying groups, Oregon Business and Industry and the nonprofit, Tax Foundation have stated that this initiative will harm companies and lead to higher costs on goods and services.

Those increases could eat a lot of that $750.

“The proposed measure would impose a massive tax increase in Oregon,” Oregon Business and Industry said. “If it qualifies for the ballot, our organization will be involved in a campaign against it, and we are confident that when voters look at the facts, they will vote to reject it.”

Another worry, the extra 3% tacked onto the 7.6% corporate tax for businesses with that income level could drive businesses out of Oregon, and keep businesses from coming into the state.

Martinez is not at all surprised at business opposition.

“It’s a tale as old as time,” she said. “Corporations don’t want to pay their fair share. They pay so little compared to everyday Oregonians. We all have really thin margins and we manage to do it.”

To date, the group has received about $740,000 in contributions and have spent all but $10,000. No doubt when it gets on the ballot, more money will be donated.

Source link: OregonLive.com — https://bit.ly/45EF1sY

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