Tax and Budget

Restore the Trust in State Trust Lands

By Anna Mae Kersey When Oregon joined the Union, the U.S. Congress granted it control of State Trust Lands, public lands managed by the state to support public education in perpetuity through the Common School Fund. Currently, 96 percent of Oregon’s remaining State Trust Lands show no signs of generating revenue within five to ten […]

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“Oregon Promise” Is Bad Policy

By Thomas Tullis On July 17, Governor Kate Brown signed Senate Bill 81, the “Oregon Promise” legislation that allocates $10 million to a “free” community college tuition program for Oregon students. As a current undergraduate at University of Oregon, I understand the importance of education and the problem of exponentially rising tuition costs. With college […]

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Press Release: Cascade Policy Institute Urges TriMet to Cancel Proposed Tax Increase

July 23, 2015 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Media Contact: John A. Charles, Jr. 503-242-0900 john@cascadepolicy.org Cascade Policy Institute Urges TriMet to Cancel Proposed Tax Increase PORTLAND, Ore. – At Wednesday’s TriMet board meeting, Cascade Policy Institute President John A. Charles, Jr. presented a detailed critique of TriMet’s proposed tax increase, and urged the Board to cancel […]

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Will “Free” Tuition Make College Cost More?

By Thomas Tullis On July 17, Governor Kate Brown signed Senate Bill 81, the “Oregon Promise” legislation that allocates $10 million to a “free” community college tuition program for Oregon students. With college tuition having increased ten-fold over the last three decades, Oregon lawmakers clearly have good intentions, but that doesn’t make the Oregon Promise […]

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How the State of Oregon Gambles Away Its Lottery Proceeds

By Thomas Tullis When Oregon politicians pretend to be experts on venture capital investing, it ends up costing the state millions of dollars in education money. This is exactly what is going on with the Oregon Growth Board, a project of the Oregon Business Development Department. Tasked with generating a return on investment by financing […]

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Don’t Steal the Kicker

Would you like to pay $284 less in Oregon personal income tax next year? That’s what the average taxpayer may save if Oregon’s constitutional kicker law is allowed to take effect. The kicker law requires that if actual state revenue for a biennium exceeds the official economic forecast by two percent or more, the entire […]

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America’s 2015 Tax Bill? It’s 31% of the Work Year

Tax Freedom Day arrives this year on April 24, six days later than it was two years ago. Tax Freedom Day is a calendar-based measure of Americans’ cumulative tax bill. It is calculated as the day on which Americans have worked long enough to pay all their taxes. Americans will have worked 114 days to […]

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Oregon’s Minimum Wage Debate: Disadvantaged Youth Are Crucial Issue

The Oregon legislature is considering raising the minimum wage over the next few years from $9.25 per hour to as much as $15. What the minimum wage means for disadvantaged youth should be the central question of this controversial topic. Plenty of middle- and upper-class teenagers take their first jobs at the minimum wage, working […]

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Government-Imposed Minimum Wage Increases Don’t Work for Oregon Small Businesses

The concept that everyone should earn at least some government-mandated minimum wage is politically very appealing. It’s almost the classic example of taking from the few and giving to the many. “The few” in this case are portrayed as rich businessmen who could never spend all the money they have, so what’s wrong with making […]

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If the state loses $1.4 billion for schools and nobody notices, did it really happen?

The Oregon legislature is in the midst of its biennial quest for more public school funding. Advocates are so desperate for cash that they are even proposing that the state seize gift cards as “abandoned property” if some portion of the original value remains unused after three years. While grabbing gift cards is certainly creative, […]

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