As of Friday, September 23, 2016
To the editor:
Everyone agrees that M97 will provide $3 billion of new revenue each year for the state of Oregon. That is pretty much a given.
The two issues most disagreed upon are where will the revenue be spent and who will pay the tax?
The ballot title very clearly states it will be spent on schools, health care and senior services.
The Oregon Legislative Council says otherwise. The tax collected from fuel sales will go to the state highway fund but this is a small part of the total, so I think it’s safe to say most of the revenue from passage of M97 will be spent as the proponents believe, which includes PERS.
The other disputed area is who will pay the tax. Our governor suggested that Oregonians are smart enough to understand that we Oregonians will pay a portion of it. The Oregon Legislative Revenue Report on M97 stated in their Sept. 2016 summary:
“Because Measure 97 is based on Oregon sales and heavily concentrated on domestic consumer sectors, it is expected to largely act as a consumption tax on the state economy. Taxes initially born by the retail trade, wholesale trade and utility sectors are expected to result in higher prices for Oregon residents.”
It appears the majority of the M97 revenues will come out of our pockets, not the corporations.
The proponents of M97 are selling the concept that Oregon’s corporations are getting away with the lowest taxes in the nation. There are numerous conflicting studies but the bottom line is that Oregon consumers will pay the majority of the tax.
M97 will produce a lot of new revenue and for the most part, you and I will pay for it, not the corporations.
The real question on M97 is do YOU want to give the state an additional $3 billion for schools, health care and senior services?