The Oregon Legislature must, by law, come up with a balanced budget by July 10. That’s a problem. The state expects to pay out about $1.4 billion more in the coming two years than it will have in revenues coming in. The solution? If you’re a legislative Democrat, that’s obvious: Raise taxes, but do so in a way that the public will approve.
That means avoiding the logical and most equitable next step, a sales tax paid by Oregonians and our millions of visitors each year. Last year, those visitors spent a largely untaxed $11.3 billion here, according to a report by Dean Runyon Associates for the Oregon Tourism Commission.