Tax Mania in Oregon

The Oregon Legislature is seriously considering dozens of tax and fee increases, including new taxes on big and small business as well as Oregon families.  The May budget forecast is expected to fall short of prior estimates.  It is possible that the budget hole for the 2009-2011 biennium may exceed 4 billion dollars, requiring the Democrat lead legislature to either cut budgets and reduce services or raise job killing taxes.

The following is a short list of bills that are moving their way through the legislature and amount to over 1.6 billion in new job killing taxes.  For a longer list of the more than 100 tax hike proposals now swirling in Salem, please click HERE.

I encourage you to help us fight these and other taxes.  The threat at the state and federal level is real.  Please help us fight for smaller government, lower taxes, and more freedom.


Russ Walker       
Northwest Director,      

HB 2009 in its current form increases the tax on 25 large hospitals from .63 percent to 4 percent of net revenue.  It sets a new tax on managed care and other health insurance plans at 1.5 percent.  (Estimated Impact: $208 million a year)

HB 2067 will sunset tax credits; creating higher taxes for businesses that currently depend on these tax credits.  The fiscal impact is unknown and work sessions are currently being held on HB2067 in the House revenue committee. (Estimated Impact: Unknown)

HB2069 reduces the amount of federally deductible medical expense that elderly taxpayers may subtract when determining Oregon taxable income. (Estimated Impact: $15-$20 million)

HB 2072 is a carbon tax; it imposes a tax on each fuel supplier and utility based on the amount of carbon in carbon-based fuel that is sold by fuel suppliers to consumers.  Additionally it imposes a carbon tax on energy producers using carbon-generated electricity supplied by utilities to consumers. (Estimated Impact: Unknown)

HB 2075 or HB2122, This session there are several bills that will increase the tax on cigarettes and tobacco products.  The cigarette tax would be raised from 29 to 30.5 mills per cigarette.  The new tax would be 3.05 cents per cigarette or roughly 60 cents a pack.   The tax would be increased from $1.18 to $1.78 cents a pack.  The tax on other tobacco products would increase by 25 percent.  (Estimated Impact: $112 million for the biennium)

HB 2076 creates higher taxes on healthcare providers (Estimated Impact: Unknown)

HB 2077 reduces federal tax subtractions from $5,500 to $3,000 and from $2,750 to $1,500.  LRO estimates this bill will have a first year revenue impact of $121 million.  (Estimated Impact: $121 million in first year)

HB2116 Requires insurers to pay a tax as a percent of gross amount of premiums.  It is a tax on healthcare insurers.  (Estimated Impact: Unknown)

HB 2119 raises the corporate minimum income tax from $10.00 to a sliding scale from $25 up to $5,000. (Estimated Impact: $37 million a year)

HB 2120 would raise the gas tax from 24 cents to 26 cents.  It increases the vehicle registration fee from $27 to $81 annually, and creates a first time vehicle title fee of $100.  Separate bills in the House would also tax the use of rental cars, and another would raise the tax on air fuel by 2 cents per gallon.  (Estimated Impact: $499 million a year)  

HB 2461 would increase the tax on a barrel of beer from $2.60 to $49.61.  This is a 1,900 percent increase.  It is equivalent to $15 cents per 12oz.  The industry maintains this will hike the price of a pint of beer by $1.50 and a six pack will cost approximately a buck more.  (Estimated Impact: $322 million over the next two years)

HB2649 establishes 7.5 percent Oregon alternative minimum tax for taxpayers with federal adjusted gross income exceeding $125,000. (Estimated Impact: $145 million)

HB 2650 Increases the personal income tax rate for taxpayers with taxable income above certain level.  The level has not been specified.  (Estimated Impact: Unknown)

HB 2651 would create a 10% tax bracket for individuals with a taxable income of $125,000 and over.  (Estimated Impact: $89 million a year)

HB2652 increases personal income tax rate on Oregon families with a taxable income above certain level undetermined.  (Estimated Impact: Unknown)

HB 2698 creates new taxes on contributions to employee stock ownership plans exempted from federal taxable income of employees and employers because of federal laws.  In other words it creates a new state tax on your retirement plans.  (Estimated Impact: Unknown)

The Oregon Legislature will also consider proposals that give local authorities the ability to raise revenue through new taxes and fees.  Local governments could have more authority to place taxes on cigarettes (HB2116), impose real estate transfer taxes (SB 396 and HB2473) and would allow certain school districts to increase property taxes (SB555).