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Kicker checks will soon be sent to taxpayers

Kicker checks will soon be sent to taxpayers

If the State of Oregon is under budget by more than 2 percent, they are required under Oregon law to send back the excess money. The Department of Revenue will be sending or ‘kicking back’ the extra money by December 15.

Some lawmakers argue that instead the money should have been set aside as a rainy day fund to ensure financial stability and keep public school and healthcare systems running without budget cuts.

In the last recession, Oregon lawmakers had to cut almost exactly the amount of money that they are now sending back to taxpayers. This cut eliminated 100,000 people from the Oregon Health Plan and the school year was drastically shortened.

What other goodies could this chunk of money have funded?

We could have increased teachers in classes by 1000, at $50,000 salary and sustained them for 20 years.

We could have given 110,000 kids $10,000 towards college.

We could have funded Governor Kulongoski’s Healthy Kids Plan for almost 10 years.

Most of us will not receive enough money to do anything significant with. According to the OCPP, the average refund will be $612, but the typical taxpayer (the middle class) will receive around $297. The wealthiest 1 percent of taxpayers who make over $360,000 annually will receive approximately $13,548 in their mailboxes. And no money is free; the federal government will take their share of the kicker refund.

Oregon voters have proven time and again that they don’t want to be taxed. But we are the first to point fingers at the state government when social service programs have to be cut. When you receive your kicker check donate it to a nonprofit that is struggling to provide Oregonians with services that the state is underfunding.

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3 Comments

  1. You speak of the kicker check isn’t worth getting. I’m retired, living on Social Security. I don’t care if the kicker check is just $10 I can put it to a good cause, my pocket. $297 would mean I might be able to buy Christmas gifts this year. Don’t mess with my last chance to receive a kicker check. I’m now a 47% voter. – Bob

  2. Sorry, from what I just read, there will be no kicker checks. The Oregon senate voted and the Governor signed a bill in 2011 stating that there would be no more kicker checks. The kicker would come in the form of a tax credit.

    http://www.oregonlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2011/05/oregon_senate_votes_to_turn_ki.html

    I hate this! I could have used the extra money this year. They didn’t bother letting us vote on it. They just did it without asking the people.

  3. “What other goodies could this chunk of money have funded?” sounds exactly like the question a burglar asks while he’s rifling through somebody else’s dresser drawers. Taking money away from people who work for it is wrong to begin with. The Oregon Dept. of Revenue isn’t “giving” anything back. It’s simply returning the money to its rightful owners, the people who had to get out of bed and go to work every day for it, instead of giving it to the non-working, non-productive people who think they have it coming.

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