Things Don’t Look Different Here: Making Sense of Taxes and Spending in Oregon

January 30, 2002By Jeff Thompson Download PDF

Executive Summary

Like most other states, Oregon is facing a serious budget shortfall. Due to the economic downturn, Oregon expects $720 million less revenue than at the close of the 2001 legislative session. Additional anticipated costs of $130 million raise the General Fund deficit to $850 million, which must be closed by a combination of increasing revenues, using one-time revenue sources, accounting gimmicks, or program cuts.

The debate over how best to balance to the state budget has been clouded by anti-government groups who have confused the public debate with misleading information about Oregon’s relatively high rank for per-capita total state and local government spending.

Among its findings, this OCPP analysis of Oregon’s tax and spending shows: