Post says new taxes in 2018 are useless to rural Oregonians
As we are midway through December and Christmas is upon us, I wanted to write a few things preparing you for what's coming in 2018.
I feel it's important to tell you about some of the taxes and fees related to House Bill 2017 (The Transportation Package) that you'll be paying for after January and July of 2018.
I want you to be informed about some of the costs of this package and why I was a no vote in the Oregon House.
There are taxes and fees that I don't believe are helpful to the vast majority of residents in Oregon. For instance, the 0.05 percent vehicle privilege tax on all new vehicles sold in Oregon. Now, if you are the Ford dealership in Woodburn, you will certainly not "eat that," you'll have to pass that on to the consumer.
The problem is not just in the tax, it's where that money goes; not to roads and bridges but in the form of a tax credit to those who purchase electric vehicles. Therefore if you are buying a vehicle and live in Mitchell, Oregon, where it might be 100 miles from your home to the nearest larger city, you've just paid $300 to $600 for basically nothing. An electric car is something that rural Oregon has no need for. If you live in a large metro area, it might be a good thing, as you might be inclined to purchase an electric vehicle with its limitations on distance it will travel between charges.
Then there is the 0.01 percent payroll tax for transit. All employees in Oregon, no matter where they live, will have 0.01 percent taken out of their paycheck to fund transit in what amounts to a handful of cities that have transit systems.
Again, maybe you'd be OK with that if you live in a metro area, but imagine you live in Scio. You get nothing for that tax. Remember, that payroll tax is on ALL employees in Oregon and, to make matters worse, a potential $250 fine per employee to the employer if they don't take that tax out of the employee's paychecks. Neither of these taxes will benefit the vast majority of Oregonians.
Let's not forget there will be fairly heavy increased DMV fees and an increase in the truck weight/mileage fees (which means though you and I may not be paying that tax directly, we will pay more for the goods delivered by truck).
So, while we do all want better roads and bridges and more safety on those roads and bridges, be prepared for more money out of your pocket and to not see much difference in our roads and bridges in northern Marion County. There has to be a more equitable way to fund our transportation across the entire state.
Looking ahead to 2018, I am anxious to serve you in the short session in February, as I have two potential bills that I am working on. One is to protect certain seed farmers and another to protect teachers from misinterpreted law on "mandatory reporting" of sexual activity among high school students. I hope to continue to fight for less government and smarter government. I want to wish you a merry Christmas and a very happy new year.