Why taxing the rich may backfire

Steve BucksteinQuickPoint!

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Oregon state legislators are busy working to pass bills that they hope will generate $800 million income tax dollars from wealthy individuals and corporations.

The personal income tax bill would impose higher tax rates on households with taxable income above $250,000 along with single filers whose income tops $125,000. Supporters think they can raise about $500 million over two years, but that’s only if economic realities don’t get in the way.

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To Empower Families, Encourage Savings

Christina MartinQuickPoint!

Some activists are begging Oregon’s legislature to create yet another social safety net: paid family leave. Senate Bill 966 would create “insurance” benefits for family leave, subsidizing time off from work to care for a new child or a seriously ill family member. It would cost each full-time worker about $42 each year. After working six months, a worker could receive up to $300 per week for six weeks while on family leave.

To pay for a worker to take the maximum amount of leave benefits, about 42 full-time workers would have to work more than a year. Since this program would change behavior, it is likely that the tax

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My Two Cents and My Freedom:The Cost of Paid Family Leave

Christina MartinCascade Commentary

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Some Oregon activists are begging the state legislature to create yet another social safety net: paid family leave. Senate Bill 966 would create “insurance” benefits for family leave, subsidizing time off from work to care for a new child or a seriously ill family member. Proponents argue that if society values families, then this bill is vital.

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“Education Does Come First, Doesn’t It?”

Kathryn HickokQuickPoint!

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“There must be a better answer than killing the online charter school movement,” declares the editorial board of the Medford Mail Tribune (“Education Does Come First, Doesn’t It?,” April 3, 2009). Unfortunately, killing online charter schools would be the likely effect of Senate Bill 767, which had a public hearing last week. And kids in rural Oregon would be some of the biggest losers.

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Market Intervention Overkill

Todd WynnCascade Commentary

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Summary: Many bills have been introduced in the 2009 legislative session to promote renewable power in Oregon. Although subsidies already exist, new incentives are being proposed to use more renewable power and to value the “clean” energy it produces. Despite these subsidies, solar and wind power still generate only a small fraction of the state’s energy; and the cost of renewable power remains significantly higher than traditional energy sources.

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Economic Development: The Effective Answer to Climate Change

Todd WynnQuickPoint!

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Although global temperatures have only increased a mere 0.6 degrees Celsius (1.1 degrees Fahrenheit) in the past century, unproven computer-generated scenarios of drastic events such as rising sea levels, food shortages, spread of disease, and economic turmoil due to global warming have overwhelmed politicians and citizens alike.

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Free-Flow Driving over the New Columbia River Bridge

John A. Charles, Jr.QuickPoint!

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Political leaders from Oregon and SW Washington agreed last week to build a 12-lane bridge over the Columbia River to replace the I-5 Interstate Bridge. The new facility will be financed in part through tolls, collected electronically at travel speeds via tolltags.

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If School Choice Were a TV Show

Kathryn Hickok
QuickPoint!

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From most of the reporting on the subject of school vouchers in the mainstream press and from comments by politicians and teachers’ union officials, you would think by now someone would have premiered a new TV show called “Fear Factor: School Choice.” But the argument that vouchers would make public schools worse is like the monster in the bedroom closet. It isn’t real, but many people are too afraid to open the door to find out.

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Cap-and-Trade’sTrue Ability to Curb Global WarmingIs Not So Hot

Todd Wynn

Summary: The decision to regulate greenhouse gases is based on the premise that reducing human-emitted greenhouse gases will turn down the global thermostat and mitigate the damages associated with global warming. Although ambitious greenhouse gas reduction goals are well established for Oregon, there has not been a serious discussion about the possible measurable benefits that would arise from pursuing these goals.
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