portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article commentary portland metro

education | government oregon elections 2006

Death To The Multnomah County ITAX!!!

The Multnomah County ITAX is set to expire, and though I supported it originally, I will happy to see it end and will not support such a measure again.
I originally supported the Multnomah ITAX, because I felt that the school funding was necessary and worth the investment. Unfortunately, those revenues have not been used effectively and all we have is a new cumbersome beaurocracy that deserves to die so politicians can come up with real solutions. Here's why:

1) The three year ITAX was presented as a temporary solution to avoid painful cuts so that politicians could come up with a more permanent and sustainable way of funding our schools. Three years later, nobody seems to have an alternative solution and city and county officials are back to brainstorming quick fixes.

2) The costs of the beaurocracy have far exceeded original projections, causing the county to hire numerous positions to support the ITAX, as well as costly consultants.

3) For a government that went to taxpayers with hat in hand asking for help, the ITAX office has become just another rude and incompetent bunch of bill collectors. Every year I pay my taxes on time. This year I did the same, but for some reason it got lost and I got hit with a late penalty because I have an April 16 postmark. Minor technicality right? Months later I'm still being billed and nobody at the county seems to be able to fix it or even allow me to speak to someone who could.

I recently visited a convenience store where the clerk was complaining about similar problems. Apparently, this "progressive tax" is hitting people making minimum wage, too. Of course, the county is very good at collections, but not solving mistakes or serving the citizens. Has anybody else had these kinds of problems?

I say screw the Multnomah County ITAX. I wanted to help and do my part for funding schools, but not anymore. Multnomah County and Portland need to solve their incompetent beaurocracies and get rid of their stupid, quick fix politicians.

i have to agree 02.Jan.2006 09:05

tax

for many of the same reasons, i have to agree. the quick fix only allowed the county beaurocracy to continue being incompetent in solving some of our vexing funding issues.

Told you so... 02.Jan.2006 11:45

taxman

Maybe now all of you will realize that you need to be a very special kind of stupid to impose ANY kind of tax on yourself.

Maybe now you will think twice before falling for the "its for the kids" crap and fear mongoring campains which only serve to line their fucking pockets, while all the while they continue to waste the revenue they get...before you vote for one more tax, just ask yourself one question...is the government using the taxes they receive in the most effecient and effective way they can? If you can't answer that question a definitive YES, then vote NO and save yourself the grief.

Cascade Policy Institute propaganda 02.Jan.2006 13:16

Man on the street promandan@hotmail.com

Federal cuts to social services, education and infrastructure have burdened local municipalities. To top this off the feds now require many unfunded mandates. This is the work of right wing think tanks. If you want to blame anyone for the neccessary local tax increases first look at the cause and effect including right wing think tank propoganda.

no need for self-righteousness 02.Jan.2006 15:06

tc

It takes most people a long time to free themselves from a very effective propaganda campaign. We should welcome anyone who has gained the awareness of what is going on. I call this game "allocation v. funding". The government, federal, state, or municipal, will never *raise* taxes for corporate subsidies. They will simply *allocate* the tax dollars for corporate subsidies and them say how the government can't possibly *fund* the things that people want without *raising* taxes. The problem is *allocation*, not *funding*. There is plenty of money available for the services that people believe make a positive impact on their lives (like an educated populace, and treatment for people with mental issues so they're not wandering around untreated on the streets) but it is simply not allocated because if it were it would reduce the amount that would be given away in corporate handouts. Like most state legislatures, Oregon congresspeople are a joke and need to be tossed out on their asses (I believe people would benefit from some strict term limits combined with campaign finance reform) for taking so much money from people and giving it to their corporate cronies. And if the corporations can't survive without stealing from the taxpayers then they don't deserve to survive.

all very fine and well 02.Jan.2006 16:51

deak

that all sounds super nice and stuff to say we shouldn't support taxes because it goes to corporate handouts, but is NOT supporting an income tax for schools going to change that? Why don't you spend your efforts fighting THOSE taxes instead of encouraging people to vote against school taxes. I'm sorry, but the idea of shifting away from property taxes to fund schools to a income tax makes quite a bit of sence if you understand how property taxes unfairly starve poorer communities of tax revenue. So yes, would I rather see my money going to schools than to Iraq? Of course. But will me not voting for a school tax change that? Of course not. You not voting for a school tax won't change the minds of these pricks in Congress, it'll just send them a messege that people in Oregon really just DON'T care about schools and that we will be happy to keep eliminating social programs as is their agenda. Instead we need to be telling them that this agenda is horseshit, removing those people from power while simultaniously supporting our social services. Also, don't forget that this tax issue is LOCAL, not federal. So if you are all thinking you'll send some messege to the right wingers in the country, think again. This isn't a symbolic cause, it's a practical issue of NEEDED funding for schools in Portland. It's fine to ask for reforms to the tax system to streamline it and make it more efficient, but eliminating it completely won't fix it, only kill it.

i would much rather pay local taxes 02.Jan.2006 18:04

uncle damn

I know the system is corrupt all the way around, but i would much rather pay local taxes anyday.

i know 55 cents out of every federal tax dollar goes directly into the pentagon with only crumbs for education. according to recent articles as much as 1.3 trillion dollars is missing out of the pentagon since 1996. the rupublican robber barrons rule washington now.

yes folks that's 1.3 TRILLIONNNNN.

while we are all fighting over the petty local taxes, military contractors are laughing all the way to the bank with billions.

in a democracy there's representation with taxation, but in our theocracy the citizens have almost no say in where the taxes are spent. what's the difference, you either pay taxes to the queen of england or king george. it's time to stop paying. unfortunately with the corporate domination of our tax codes, it would take an all out revolt to change things.

is the toob loving, violence fed, drugged and overweight zombie nation who represent the main stream ever going to wake up? i'm not holding my breath.

I think the idea of cascadia is looking better and better every year.

No more local income taxes for schools! Tell Potter NO 26.Jan.2006 20:55

Fedup with Bandaids

I voted for the Itax too... but what a mistake. It hasn't done diddly. I'm going to vote every half-assed proposal like this down from now on. Yes, I support our schools, and yes, I've got kids who will be impacted. But these little measure are like trying to cover an amputated limb with a band-aid. It might slow the hemorrhaging for a bit, but only a short bit. I say, let the situation get worse and make our politicians fix this permanently. I'm sick of us here in Portland getting double-taxed. First our property tax base goes to fund the rest of the state's school, and then we have this idiotic income tax to try to bring some of the funding back to OUR schools. I say if you decide to live out in the hicks, then figure out a way to fund your own schools -- don't rely on us in the cities to do it for you.
And for folks like me, we're basically getting triple taxed: Property, I-tax, and then since it doesn't do enough for the schools anyway, I end up paying private school tuition to boot. I'm sick of it. Tell Potter and his new proposal to go to hell.

Fight the new Potter Town Tax! ITAX Must GO! 02.Feb.2006 23:38

Shittyofportland docmikepdx@yahoo.com

This ITAX thing has been a huge burden to 1000's of people without children and has not done abit of good to fund the schools proper. Now Potter our generous mayor has come up with a stupid plan to simply replace the ITAX with another vexing and problematic tax for those now streched to the max in the money department.

It's far better for Portland to cut school administrators, mid level management, all travel (except for teachers and training) adopt a linux only mentality right down to the desktop and dump all microsoft computer licenses, eliminate costly non-competitive bidding processes for things like toilet paper to food service. Really it's time to give the school district a huge enema and dump all the dead wood, people not putting in the time, hours or output. Put the millions saved by fixing the "management issues" and hire more teachers in the $43K year category!

It's just time folks... clean up our schools starting from the top down!

Fight this tax and put money back into families bank accounts! We need money too!

Sincerely,

The Shitty of Portland