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Feb-19-2009 17:55printcomments

Governor Lays Out Wrong Strategy for Tackling the Revenue Shortfall

Statement by OCPP executive director Charles Sheketoff.

Gov. Ted Kulongoski
Gov. Ted Kulongoski
Salem-News.com photo by Tim King

(SILVERTON, Ore.) - Governor Ted Kulongoski's "three year fiscal strategy" announced today threatens to aggravate the recession and the state's fiscal condition as it undermines President Barack Obama's effort to maintain state government spending.

The President's stimulus plan signed into law earlier this week is designed to maintain, and if possible enhance, state spending to help pull the nation out of the recession. Yet, the Governor proposes to spend only a portion of the stimulus money that's available to spend on education and other public services this biennium. The Governor is choosing to cut spending on services that President Obama's stimulus funds were designed to maintain.

Equally troubling is the Governor's threat to veto any proposal to tap Oregon's two reserve funds. On March 16, 2007, when he signed the legislation creating Oregon's rainy day fund, the Governor said, "Today we have built a roof over our heads and when the next economic storm comes, we'll be ready."

He added, "we will continue to provide vital services, and we will have fulfilled our most solemn obligation as elected officials to the protect health, safety and future of the people of Oregon."

Today's veto threat and decision to seek $350 million in cuts this biennium breaches that solemn obligation.


We acknowledge and respect the Governor's desire to act prudently with the reserves and federal funds, but the strategy he has outlined threatens to aggravate the recession and the state's fiscal condition. The President and leading economists know that the way out of a recession is to maintain spending and that cutting spending only worsens the problem.

We respectfully call on the Governor to reconsider the strategy he outlined today and make good on his comments from two years ago. The downturn is here and full protection is what Oregonians need right now, not just to help them cope with the recession but to make sure that the downturn does not get worse.

The Governor also needs to recognize that our revenue problems need to be addressed with revenue solutions. Legislators and the public are looking to him for leadership on that issue. Sadly, his fiscal strategy was silent about revenue options.

Source: Oregon Center for Public Policy




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Henry Ruark February 20, 2009 6:53 pm (Pacific time)

To all: Funny what queer noises one hears in the current jungle from time to time. Must be the moss hanging down from those Neanderthal trees, preventing any vision of realities. Perhaps those painful iterations come from the odd creatures swinging from tree to tree, when they don't lose grip on contorted limbs in the jungle maze. See upcoming Op Ed for more details...


ChrisJones February 20, 2009 12:16 pm (Pacific time)

Oregon should convert a billion into gold bullion for our reserves. When gold goes up to 4000 an ounce we'll be in good shape.


ChrisJones February 20, 2009 12:14 pm (Pacific time)

On collapse of dollar: That's why we need competing honest currencies so we can make the federal reserve notes obsolete before they are worthless.


to stephen February 20, 2009 11:48 am (Pacific time)

How many of the rich were legislated into their wealth? I'm betting more than you poor bashers would admit I'm a libertarian myself but to many people are believing that all rich are there from hard work and all poor are there from bad work.


stephen February 20, 2009 7:37 am (Pacific time)

STATEMENT MADE BY THE LATE DR. ADRIAN ROGERS OF BELLEVUE BAPTIST CHURCH , MEMPHIS , TENNESSEE : YOU CANNOT LEGISLATE THE POOR INTO FREEDOM BY LEGISLATING THE WEALTHY OUT OF FREEDOM. WHAT ONE PERSON RECEIVES WITHOUT WORKING FOR, ANOTHER PERSON MUST WORK FOR WITHOUT RECEIVING. THE GOVERNMENT CANNOT GIVE TO ANYBODY ANYTHING THAT THE GOVERNMENT DOES NOT FIRST TAKE FROM SOMEBODY ELSE. WHEN HALF OF THE PEOPLE GET THE IDEA THAT THEY DO NOT HAVE TO WORK BECAUSE THE OTHER HALF IS GOING TO TAKE CARE OF THEM, AND WHEN THE OTHER HALF GETS THE IDEA THAT IT DOES NO GOOD TO WORK BECAUSE SOMEBODY ELSE IS GOING TO GET WHAT THEY WORK FOR, THAT MY DEAR FRIEND, IS ABOUT THE END OF ANY NATION. YOU CANNOT MULTIPLY WEALTH BY DIVIDING IT.


what if: February 20, 2009 7:15 am (Pacific time)

what if this scenario plays out? collapse of the dollar, a new world bank and cashless society, the bankers will control all we sell and buy, they will have high fees, they will take your money for whatever reasons they decide, and will cut off your account if you complain. Just something to think about. They are doing some of this scenario with unemployment checks as I type this. So dont think its too far out there.


stephen February 20, 2009 7:02 am (Pacific time)

I guess I must really be out of touch then. Here I thought spending is what got us into this mess....silly me.


ChrisJones February 19, 2009 10:45 pm (Pacific time)

This article was obviously written by a true keynesianist. Things are not that bad yet and bracing for harder times may not be a bad idea. We are going to need that money for tent cities and soup kitchens soon when the hope administration brings unemployment up to 20%.

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