City Club October forum: Measure 97 debate

Formerly known as IP 28, measure 97 would establish a minimum tax of $30,000 plus 2.5 percent of gross sales that exceed $25 million. It would remove the current minimum gross sales tax rate, which is around 0.1 percent and capped at $100,000. Corporations with a high enough income are taxed according to their income in lieu of the gross sales tax. The income tax rate for qualifying businesses is 6.6 percent of taxable income up to $1 million and 7.6 percent of taxable income above $1 million. These rates apply when the result is greater than the minimum sales-based tax. The income tax on high-income corporations would be retained if the initiative passed.

According to the Oregon Legislative Revenue Office, for example, a corporation with less than $20 million in sales would not be affected by the change. A corporation with $70 million dollars in sales would see a 23-fold increase in its tax obligation.

Join representatives from each side of the issue to learn about the tax and its implications on Thursday, Oct. 20, 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Riverhouse on the Deschutes Convention Center.

Panelists:

Peter Buckley (YES on 97) represents south Jackson County in the Oregon House of Representatives. He was first elected in 2004 following an over 20-year career as a director, writer, actor and producer in west coast regional theatre. He has been a House co-chair of the Joint Committee on Ways & Means, the Legislature’s budget writing committee, since December of 2008.

Alison Hart (NO on 97) is an Outreach Consultant for the statewide coalition that has formed to oppose a $6 billion tax increase on Oregon sales that will be on the November ballot. Alison’s advocacy efforts with community members and organizations are helping increase awareness of the harmful impacts of the proposed tax. Alison also handles the association management practice at Public Affairs Counsel including the Oregon State Chamber of Commerce for which she is the Executive Director. Prior, she was the CEO of the Gresham Area Chamber of Commerce.

An accomplished business and community leader, the foundation of Alison’s career has included designing, developing, marketing and facilitating membership and community-building programs for both private sector and nonprofit organizations. She brings an innate ability to cultivate trusted relationships by delivering significant value to her clients, navigating them to success by serving as a valuable resource while providing leadership on key issues impacting the region.

Moderator:

Anne George, Facilitation, Mediation + Public Involvement.

Due to the potential statewide impact of this measure, City Club is seeking questions (from MEMBERS ONLY) prior to the forum. This is your opportunity to ask the participants a question regarding Proposition 97. With the limited amount of time and our unbiased debate policy, there will be no audience question and answer portion for this particular forum.

To register, please visit www.cityclubco.org or call 541-633-7163. Registration (closes at noon on Monday, Oct. 17) is only $25 for members and $40 for non-members. Plated lunch is included.

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