The Oregon Center for Public Policy, a non-profit, non-partisan research institute whose name was misspelled by the Elections Division in about one-quarter of the 1.5 million Voters’ Pamphlets being mailed out next week, today urged voters “to make no mistake about it and vote ‘NO’ on Measure 13,” the measure depleting an education endowment fund and creating a rainy day fund only for education.
The Elections Division dropped the letter “L” from the word “Public” in one of two references to the research institute’s name in almost 400,000 Voters’ Pamphlets being distributed to all or some of the voters in 22 Oregon counties.
“The Elections Division immediately stopped the presses to minimize the problem, publicly accepted responsibility, and apologized for the innocent and humorous mistake,” said Sheketoff. “We are not going to pick a public bone with them.”
“Whether voters have the collectors’ edition or the corrected version, they should read their Voters’ Pamphlets carefully to learn why they should vote ‘NO’ on Measure 13,” said Charles Sheketoff, executive director of the Oregon Center for Public Policy.
“Voters should make no mistake about it and vote ‘NO’ on Measure 13,” said Sheketoff.
The Oregon Center for Public Policy’s argument against the measure notes four flaws:
- Measure 13 requires a supermajority vote to spend the money for education during a recession, giving power to a minority to override the majority;
- Measure 13 requires the automatic stockpiling of funds even if the legislature is cutting education and safety net budgets;
- Measure 13 ignores state “safety net” services that experience increased demands during an economic downturn such as cash assistance to families with children who don’t have or run out of unemployment insurance or who need health insurance; and,
- The pool of funds created by Measure 13 will not be adequate to prevent budget cuts or tax increases in future recessions and creates a problem for the next Legislature and budget cycle.
“Measure 13 was seriously flawed without the typo in our name,” said Sheketoff. “The Elections Division made a mistake. We hope the voters won’t,” he added.
“After the initial ‘uh oh’ response, we had a good laugh about it,” said Sheketoff, pointing out that Oregon would not allow the word pubic to be printed on a license plate, and that the word public appears often in Voters Pamphlets.
“This typographical error ought to be the nightmare of every public official running for public office or public interest advocate working in the public arena for sound public policy,” said Sheketoff.