Recently we asked, Will the kicker make Oregon a fool again? Unless the legislature changes course, the state will spend $473 million of unanticipated tax revenues on the so-called kicker. History teaches us that the reckless spending could come back to bite us in the worst way. The fiscally prudent course of action would be to save the unanticipated funds for an economic rainy day.
As we noted in that blog post, there is now a proposal on the table (HB 3555) to suspend the kicker. Please sign this petition calling on the legislature to invest half of the money in schools now and save half in the state's rainy day fund. Sign here.
Rumor has it that Representative Tobias Read (D, Beaverton), who wrote an op ed in the UnOregonian in support of "booting" the kicker, is using HB 3555 to jump start a campaign for state wide office - to replace outgoing Treasurer Ted Wheeler in 2016.
I e-mailed Read's office that I support HB 3555 and got a quick response to tell my friends. I then learned that Read doesn't expect HB 3555 to move. He should know, it's in the House Revenue Committee which he sits on! Talk about opportunistic and cynical politics.
Sign the petition, cast a vote for "hope" over "cynicism."
We've come to a time in the Puzzle Palace when there seems to be a "black out" on many pieces of legislation. As my lobbyist mentors "schooled" me in '91 what the leadership wants they get. Now we'll find out what their "real agenda" really is.
Got a call from my state Rep. Susan McClain (D, Hillsboro) and I told her I support HB 3555. If not this session, hopefully 2016 but the reality is getting something done in an election year which has a partisan cast to it is "zero to none."
The time is NOW for HB 3555 (booting the Kicker), HB 2077 (transparency) and HB 2564 (inclusionary zoning). The politics of gridlock is the failure of "politics" not the evidence of it. It's a cowards way out. It's time to put up or shut up in the Puzzle Palace.