A Simple Vote on Tax Incentives

Chuck Sheketoff

The Portland Business Journal weekly conducts an on-line "Business Pulse Survey."

This week's question is "As global competition heats up, should government increase the use of tax incentives to entice companies to relocate or expand here?"

If you want to vote in the survey, go to www.bizjournals.com/portland/bol_survey and click on the survey link. The survey submission deadline is August 16, 2005.

To find out more about tax incentives, see The Great American Jobs Scam: Corporate Tax Dodging and the Myth of Job Creation.

  • Sid (unverified)

    The Toyota decision to go with Ontario, Canada instead of Mississippi or Alabama, despite huge offers from those states of huge tax subsidies. Those subsidies were twice as large as what the Canadians offered.

  • Aaron (unverified)

    Two words ...universal healthcare!!!

    The US can not compete with that growing cost for corporations being payed by the employees and the government, and not the corporations.

    Game over and turn out the lights.

    Wonder if FDR opted for universal healthcare over social security in "dog days of summer" of the 1935 session? But he did not want to buttheads with the labor movement and thier incentive for drawing in new employees....healthcare; before the 1936 election cycle.

  • Jim Karlock (unverified)

    I have posted a list of property tax abatements and diversions at www.saveportland.com. These are mostly to increase density, but some are to attract industry.

    It totals around $80 million annually. Money that otherwise wouold go to schools, fire and police.

    Thanks JK

  • Cindy M (unverified)

    The northwest is its own enticement to locating here. Let's take pride in that. They'll come anyway. Oregon has a proud history that we denegrate by selling out to companies who are only looking at the bottom line. There are many companies that recognize what's important to the quality of life for all and will choose to come here.

  • djk (unverified)

    Handing out tax breaks and special treatment for particular favored companies is a sucker's game. The companies that chase that stuff will leave when they get a better deal elsewhere. Meanwhile, it's a slap in the face for all the businesses that grew up here, paid their taxes and played by the rules.

    There's more than one way to attact businesses. We could also have higher-than-average (but not oppressive) taxes on businesses, applied evenly and fairly across-the-board, to pay for a much better business climate. It's really in how we spend the money. Intelligent, strategic use of tax money can make Oregon a much better place for everyone to do business. Oregon could offer the best-educated workforce in the U.S.A., a comprehensive and well-maintained transportation infrastructure, an ample supply of affordable clean water and electricity, and comprehensive public-private health insurance, maybe even an improved regulatory structure that was firm and effective but simple to understand and follow. I think most businesses would rather pay a little more in taxes than mess around with a lot of red tape. Oregon can be a good place to live and do business without jumping into the "race to the bottom" or giving in to corporate blackmail (give us big special tax breaks or we'll leave).

    We'd also be better off attracting small and midsized companies and giving them a positive environment to grow. Better to have 20 companies employing 100 people each than one company that employs 2000.

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