By Starla Pointer • Staff Writer • 

McMinnville school district begins budget process

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Comments

Jim

Typical of our district. Cut 14 to 20 teachers and 1/2 an administration position. The usual approach in this district don't cut the fat but cut the people that teach kids. I'm sorry but it doesn't add up for me.

Don Dix

Jim -- Government is quite adept at missing the fat. Look at the feds ... all fat, very little muscle.

From the article --'And she noted that rising PERS pension program costs — about $1.2 million more for McMinnville school next year' -- How many positions would that effectively eliminate? Why does that statement have no play in your assessment?

McMinnville pays over $90K to put a teacher in a classroom. Maybe it would be helpful if the PERS, salaries, and benefit costs were stated on a per student basis (like the funding from the state).

Jim

Don another interesting thing to know is what our administrators make compared to other districts in the state of similar size. I know most of the coaches make about half of what the Salem coaches make in their respective sports. Some how I bet the administrators don't make half of what the Salem schools make. Maybe the administration should have to fund raise for their assistants like the coaches do.

kona

Jim, specifically what administrative positions would you want cut?

Jim

Kona I know to many people at the district to get involved in specifics but do know when there's not enough money I want teachers doing their jobs and trim from the people that.dont have day to day interaction with the students.

kona

It will be interesting to hear the ridiculous demands the union will bring to the table. They always start with demands so unacceptable so when they reach the compromise phase they are still ridiculously in their favor. These are professional negotiators that have sucked Oregon into the tenuous economic position Oregon always finds itself. Shame on the school boards across the state for the last 30 years for yielding to this consistent pressure.

kona

Jim, Teachers have shot themselves in the feet in Oregon. Oregon has among the highest compensated teachers of all states in both salaries (12th highest) and benefits . It is the primary reason for the large class sizes in Oregon. The cuts in teacher jobs in Oregon is totally self inflicted.

This coming from a state (Oregon) that is one of the poorer states in the lower half of per capita income. Also from a state with a very poor reputation for educational results.

Sal Peralta

Kona - We are also at the bottom in student-teacher ratio and instructional hours. A student who goes from k-12 in Washington will graduate with 1 more year of instructional time than a student from Oregon.

Until they can slow the rate of growth of labor costs for public employees, they will always be chasing new funding to maintain the current service level.

Don Dix

Sal -- Your assessment fails to include one other ingredient -- the Courtneys, Koteks, and Browns who's doctrines dominate the legislature.

When the OEA sends a request for increased funding, the Ds in the legislature will be on board before the ink is dry. And if the union writes and submits one of those thinly-veiled tax measures designed to swell union coffers (and nothing more), like M97, the Ds always run interference and distract attention from the real intent.

When a voting representative of the government has made their choice based on who submitted any proposal at any time, the system isn't about what's best for Oregon. It's about enriching the public unions (and members) by keeping the most loyal reps (Ds) in office to protect the status quo.

Back in the day, it was believed that a rectal injection was a cure-all for many internal issues. Oregon needs that injection to expel the contents of a union-complicit legislature and administration -- 'a free-flowing political enema'!

Sal Peralta

Don - The public wants us to control costs and for large corporations to pay their fair share. The public employee unions dominate Democratic policy with respect to budgeting and payroll in this state are part of the problem. So are the large corporations that dominate Republican policy with respect to revenue. Both parties give undue deference to state agencies and to lobbyists for business and industry, all of it to the detriment of the public interest.

Sal Peralta

Pretending that the sole problem with the revenue situation in the state is the public employee unions and not the large corporations who have gone from paying 24 percent of state tax revenues in the 1970s to less than 4 percent today is to be seeing the problem through a highly skewed partisan lens that is really no different in character than what you are accusing the Democrats of.

kona

Sal,I have never known of a business who didn't pass increased taxes to the consumer. It is just a "back-door" sales tax that is collected by the business for the state. When you add up the terrible spending decisions made by our leaders in our state government, the amount is very serious. Our state government has been derelict in spending. Revenue increases is being outspent by very poor management.

"Companies that are taxed are likely to pass at least half of the extra cost on to their customers, said John Tapogna, president of Portland-based economic consulting firm EcoNorthwest. These costs can compound as the same product is taxed multiple times at different points in production. In the end, the customer is likely stuck paying much of those add-ons."

kona

Sal, do you have a link for that 4 percent? Even the very progressive OCPP has higher estimates.

"In the mid-1970s, corporations contributed about 18.5 percent of all income taxes paid in Oregon. Today, the corporate share of has shrunk to just 6.7 percent." (April 2017)

kona

Sal, one other question.

You said, "The public wants us to control costs and for large corporations to pay their fair share." What is the "fair share" of taxes for large corporations? And who decides this "fair share"? It is not like large corporations are flocking to Oregon to do business. We have among the lowest ranked (10th from the bottom) Fortune 500 or Fortune 1000 companies of all states. Where is the rule or data that suggests "fair share" is a valid argument? Do we raise the "fair share" so consumers in Oregon pay higher consumption costs? Oregon is in the lower half of per capita income now ... do we make it more difficult for these people to consume?

Sal Peralta

Kona - I think it is amusing in a very sad way how many people like yourself advocate for large publicly traded companies that already essentially control every aspect of public policy that relates to their core business endeavors, including especially tax policy. I think it is staggeringly naive for you to defend what large corporations in this country are getting away with in terms of shifting the tax policy off of themselves and on to middle class and working people.

Sal Peralta

In my mind "their fair share" is less than Measure 97 (which I opposed) and more than the corporate minimum that are being paid by many of Oregon's largest and most profitable firms.

kona

Sal, I think it is "a very sad way how many people like yourself" have no clue that we live in a capitalistic economy. The United States government and the citizens who live here are directly enhanced by the economic strength of business and not insignificantly the large corporations which are mostly publicly owned by our citizens. These corporations provide much for the economy besides taxes which you are obviously unaware.

You suggest these corporations "already essentially control every aspect of public policy that relates to their core business endeavors, including especially tax policy". That is untrue and you should know it. Are you trying to make me believe that these corporations have set the highest tax rate on themselves of all first world countries? Yes, for many there are tax breaks given to them to lower that rate in certain circumstances, but in general the tax rate is not as lucrative as you would like people to believe (or you believe).

kona

Sal, the effective tax rates for individuals in the U.S. is comparative to the effective tax rates of U.S. corporations. I am curious how you expect "fair share" for corporations to be more than individuals?

"In 2013, the U.S. Government Accountability Office released a study showing the average effective tax rate for corporations was 12.6 percent of pretax income. According to CNN Money, the same report showed U.S.- based corporations pay the highest statutory and effective tax rates in the world."

"The majority of taxpayers reporting an adjusted gross income of less than $50,000 paid an average effective tax rate of less than 9 percent. For taxpayers with adjusted gross incomes of $50,000 to $99,999, the majority also pay an average effective tax rate of less than 9 percent."

"Expressed as a percentage, effective tax rates refer to amounts actually paid regardless of earned income.
As of December 2014, the latest data available on effective tax rates from the Internal Revenue Service is based on 2011 tax returns.

"Incomes Less than $99,999, effective tax rates for returns in all income brackets range from less than 5 percent to more than 80 percent. However, depending on tax credits and adjustments to income, the majority within different brackets fall within a particular range. For example, the majority of taxpayers reporting an adjusted gross income of less than $50,000 paid an average effective tax rate of less than 9 percent. For taxpayers with adjusted gross incomes of $50,000 to $99,999, the majority also pay an average effective tax rate of less than 9 percent."

"$100,000 to $200,000, the average effective tax rates for the majority of taxpayers reporting an adjusted gross income of $100,000 to $200,000 was less than 20 percent. The highest percentile within this tax bracket paid an effective tax rate of 10 to 14 percent.

kona

cont.
"Incomes Above $200,000, the IRS reported 4,692,499 returns from taxpayers filing on an adjusted gross income of more than $200,000 in 2011. Of this group, only 27,722 paid less than a 5 percent effective tax rate. The two largest sub-groups were 1,756,246 taxpayers whose effective tax rate was 15 to 19 percent and 1,478,779 taxpayers whose effective tax rate was 20 to 24.99 percent."

Sal Peralta

Kona - You are living in a fantasy world. The United States is a mixed economy and has been for most of this century. Our period of greatest economic success happened *AFTER* WWII DURING the era of Big Government. Public education, public roads, public libraries, public investment in rail, airports, police, firefighters, even defense spending all meet the criteria of "socialist" programs. The single biggest factor in our Post WWII growth was probably the 30 Billion in 1950 dollars that we *GAVE* to rebuild Europe because they spent that money on American raw materials and finished products that helped our country employ millions of workers in US factories. So quit peddling your b.s. fantasies about the nature of the US economy.

Sal Peralta

Also, all of the tax statistics you cite reflect a massive reduction in the taxes paid by the top wage earners and the largest corporations relative to, say 1980. You can overlay the growth of income inequality in this country to those policy changes and find a near perfect match. Over the last 40 years, wealthy people and large corporations have shifted a larger share of the tax burden on to the rest of the society while at the same time have reaped most of the benefit from our economic growth.

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