The Public Employee Retirement System (PERS) crisis has hit a $22 billion deficit and the Legislature seems paralyzed to address the crisis. The media is sounding the alarm and experts are hinting that we might have to fall off a cliff before changes will come.
A website Oregon Ponzi Scheme helps to compare the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme to Oregon PERS crisis for which Katy Durant, former chair of the PERS investment council stated “We should have been addressing this 20 years ago and it’s just been building. It’s a little bit like a Ponzi scheme. Sooner or later it’s going to catch up with you.” Continue reading
Oregon Regional Economic Indicators (click chart for larger view)
By UofO Oregon Economic Indicators
Regional economies experienced some mixed numbers in February, but underlying trends remain solid. Highlights of this month’s report include:
– For all regions, moving average measures (which smooth monthly volatility) remain above zero, indicating above trend activity. Recall that these figures measure relative average growth; each region has its own underlying growth rate. Continue reading
Governor Brown’s Office Delays Public Records Request
By Taxpayer Foundation of Oregon,
The Bend Bulletin Editorial Board stated last summer on Oregon Governor Kate Brown “The governor’s office is so slow to fill requests for her calendar and documents relating to it as to render the final product useless or nearly so.”
A few weeks later after that media complaint, Governor Kate Borwn’s office was repeating the mistake again on public records request on the Governor’s own office spending (See Oregon Capitol Watch request here). A July 2016 public records request was not made public for nearly four months later in November. What takes other states to provide in days, seems to take months for Oregon to provide. Continue reading
By Taxpayer Association of Oregon
Governor Kate Brown and some lawmakers say the State of Oregon is facing a $1.7 billion budget shortfall in the 2017-19 biennium. Yet, this shortfall is in the face of all-time high tax money coming in to state government. Continue reading
The Oregon Legislature begins today and taxpayers should pay attention.
The Oregon Legislature is looking at over a 100 tax and fee increase proposals. The Oregon Legislature will also look at rule changes which will have the effect of raising taxes and costs on taxpayers and businesses. The Oregon budget will grow by over a billion dollars in new tax revenue by the increased economy.
Oregon Department of Revenue Press Release,
As of December 31, 2016, the Department of Revenue has received $60.2 million in marijuana tax payments since the state began taxing recreational marijuana in January 2016. Additional marijuana tax data is available at www.oregon.gov/dor/stats Marijuana tax receipt information will be updated on this page monthly, generally toward the end of the month. Continue reading
By Taxpayer Foundation of Oregon
Health insurance prices on the Obamacare exchanges have been published on HealthCare.gov, and it’s not good news. Higher premiums, higher deductibles, and fewer choices.
Fewer plans: Last year, residents in Portland, Oregon had a choice of 87 plans. This year, we get only 37 plans from which to choose (1). Continue reading