Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Legislation explained

I can't believe I haven't posted in over a month. I've been busy getting ready to graduate and with planning for the Pride festival (June 13-14!) but this was worth sharing.

I absolutely love it when law-makers actually take the time to explain in detail (but not mired in legalese) the impact of legislation that gets passed. Michael Dembrow is outstanding at this.

From his most recent newsletter:

HB 2578, the predatory towing bill that I sponsored with Rep. Chuck Riley, unanimously passed the Senate today. The bill requires a tower to contact a property owner or tenant before towing and allows the vehicle owner to move their vehicle without fees beyond the initial hookup. The bill also requires that parking rules be clearly posted by a landlord.

Patrol towing generally involves an agreement between a property owner and tower to allow any unauthorized vehicle on the property to be towed without notice. HB 2578 prohibits this practice except for in cases where public safety or access is compromised. The bill would also require a tower to take photographic evidence of a parking infraction before towing a vehicle. There was a minor amendment on the Senate side, so the bill will come back to us in the House for a concurrence vote, and then on to the Governor.

Hearing Revenue Bills

Last week I reported on the Co-Chairs’ proposed budget, involves $2 billion in very difficult cuts. It’s a very daunting prospect, very tough work. But it will be even worse if we cannot find ways to add new revenue to the budget; the budget assumes that we will be able to raise $800 million through increases in individual and corporate taxes. Our office has received emails and letters opposing any increases in the upper tax brackets, but many more in support of asking wealthier Oregonians to help us get through these difficult times.

I want to clarify one thing about the individual income tax. We are currently looking at an increase of just under 2% (above the current 9%) for those with household incomes above $250,000. Some have been misinforming the public and saying that all their taxable income will be taxed at this higher rate. That’s not true. The additional 2% is ONLY on the income above $250,000. So, for a family with a $260,000 income, they would only see their taxes increased on the additional $10,000 in income. And here is the rest of it.

1 comment:

Diane J Standiford said...

Yes, shocking when a layman can understand it.