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Here's The Kicker: Oregonians To Receive A Tax Rebate In 2018


Oregon state economists say the median kicker will be $89.

Oregon state economists say the median kicker will be $89.

Courtesy of the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis

It’s official: Oregon taxpayers will receive a $464 million kicker next year.

The kicker is that unique Oregon institution that dishes out money to taxpayers when the state’s economists under-predict how much revenue the state will collect over a two-year period.

Gov. Kate Brown praised the economic forecast in a news release Wednesday, saying, “Oregon continues to show the world that our state is a great place to live, visit, and do business.” 

House Republican Leader Mike McLane, R-Powell Butte, said in a news release that the kicker is “good news” for taxpayers, but added that state government needs to “do its part by reforming the other side of the ledger.”

State economists say the median kicker will be $89. The average will be $277. The top 1 percent of taxpayers will get upwards of $4,900.

Oregonians last received a kicker in the 2015 tax year.

The rebate is no longer distributed by check. Instead, the kicker will show up as a credit on the tax returns that Oregonians will file next spring. If a taxpayer is due a refund, the kicker will be added to that refund. If a taxpayer owes money, the kicker will offset the amount of money owed to the state.

The kicker was created by Oregon lawmakers in 1979, and voters enshrined it in the state constitution in 2000.

Critics say it makes it harder for the state to make long-term budgeting decisions.

In response to Wednesday’s announcement, Chuck Sheketoff of the left-leaning Oregon Center for Public Policy said: “One of Oregon’s most fiscally irresponsible policies is now set to rear its ugly head.”

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