“If approved, the measure would end the game-playing that we’ve seen the last few years by which lawmakers have managed to avoid the existing constitutional requirement for a supermajority when raising revenue. The measure makes sense, and approving it would serve to tell some lawmakers Oregonians are not as dumb as they seem to think we are.”
– The Bulletin
July 2, 2018
Over 20 years ago Oregon voters passed a constitutional amendment requiring a supermajority vote on all revenue raising legislation. In recent years, legislators and their lawyers have found creative loopholes and made several attempts at raising taxes and eliminating exemptions, deductions and credits without a supermajority vote.
Dozens of bills were introduced in past legislative sessions that included new or increased fees, assessments or penalties. Many of these proposals would have impacted our industry. A few examples include:
- New taxes on food, coffee, soda, and beer have become common amongst legislators in Salem as they search for new revenue, despite record spending levels. Without Measure 104, legislators can propose a new beverage tax and package it with an expiring tax credit to avoid a 3/5th supermajority vote. Passing Measure 104 will prevent partisan gamesmanship and ensure tax fairness in the Oregon Legislature. (HB 2875- 2017; HB 2264- 2011)
- Oregon’s lodging taxes are invested in tourism promotional efforts and have a track record of triggering local economic growth. Today, only a simple majority vote of the legislature is preventing politicians from changing restrictions currently in place to protect these dollars for industry Investments. Measure 104 would require a 3/5th vote of the legislature to change the use of taxes previously passed and protect the purpose behind industry specific taxes. (HB 4146- 2016; HB 2267- 2003)
- Oregon politicians targeted small businesses with a $1 billion tax increase on a simple-majority vote, eliminating tax breaks for hardworking, family-owned businesses that are available for large corporations. (SB 1528- 2018)
Ballot Measure 104 ensures that any legislation that raises revenue requires a three-fifths majority vote. This includes fees or the elimination of tax exemptions, deductions or credits – making it clear that Oregonians are done with politicians working behind closed doors to increase taxes.
It is urgent that we pass Ballot Measure 104 and put an end to these easy tax hikes.
Thanks to the help of over 15 statewide business organizations and grassroots groups – and over 174,000 Oregonians who signed the petition – Oregon voters can affirm their decision in November.
Yes on 104
PO Box 519
Tualatin, OR 97026