First, the good news: transplants from the Bay area are increasingly less likely to relocate to the Pacific Northwest metropolitan areas of Portland and Seattle; home inquiries from the Bay area are down significantly. Those folks are more interested in relocating to Austin, Boston, and the "tech triangle" in North Carolina, among other locations. Des Moines and Omaha are popular as well.
Now the bad news: the city of Portland and Multnomah County wanted us to pass a $250 million bond measure this November, but they've already bumped it up to nearly $260 million. Ostensibly, this money would be used to build "affordable housing", as though that had somehow become a core governmental function.
It's been a mad scramble inside Portland City Hall as officials race to send a $258.4 million housing tax to voters this fall.
Less urgent? Spelling out goals for how that money will be spent.
Piffle! Details, details...just rest assured that it'll all be spent wisely, Citizens. Really, they know what's best.
And in other news, The Oregonian reports that Oregon sends more blacks to prison than "most other states", the obvious implication being that we're racist - certainly, it can't be because these poor, misunderstood fellas commit significantly more crimes, per capita, than Asians and Latinos and whites. It seems that what is needed, here, is an "outreach effort" to recruit more Asians, Latinos, and whites into joining gangs in order to encourage them to engage in drive-by shootings and similar wholesome activities.
Meanwhile, public employee unions continue to bang the drums in their effort to impose yet another tax on businesses in the state - this one on gross revenue in addition to the income taxes they already pay - and the unions continue to lie.
Northwest Natural, which serves about 640,000 customers in Oregon, now pays about $6 million per year in state corporate taxes, said Melissa Moore, spokeswoman for Northwest Natural. Under IP 28, the company’s corporate taxes could double or triple to up to $20 million, Moore said.
The estimated 2-percent gas rate hike from IP 28 accounts only for the additional cost in corporate taxes. Northwest Natural also anticipates additional indirect costs to its operations such as an increase in the prices of pipes, valves, vehicles, and insurance. Those costs could drive up rates further, Moore said.
So of course, the public employee unions accuse the gas company of lying while maintaining that their big tax won't affect individuals.