Portland Business Community calls on Metro to refund "greedy" out of state corporate money



Portland Business Community calls on Metro to refund

“The suggestion that Portland employers never support taxes is just an attempt to divide this community in a desperate pursuit to establish a permanent payroll tax. It is so ridiculous, it defies belief."

PORTLAND, OR -- This week, supporters of Metro’s transportation measure branded the local business community as nothing more than a bunch of “greedy corporations” who are unwilling to support taxes (see mailer).

Today, based on their public objections to corporate "greed," we are calling on Metro to refund the $480,000 they have raised from out-of-state companies, which makes up nearly half of all the money raised to promote a tax on local jobs. Most of these companies or their employees will not pay this tax if it passes. 

“The suggestion that Portland employers never support taxes is just an attempt to divide this community in a desperate pursuit to establish a permanent payroll tax. It is so ridiculous, it defies belief,” said Andrew Hoan, president and CEO, Portland Business Alliance. 

“Just five months ago, the Portland business community helped lead the campaign for a new business tax, referred by Metro, to fund the largest homeless services program in the nation,” said Hoan. “Right now, Portland business leaders are working hand in hand with campaigns to support taxes for schools, parks and health care. Many of these campaigns are promoting support from the Portland Business Alliance in their final appeals to voters. The only campaign engaging in this type of desperate attack on corporate ‘greed’ are supporters of the Metro wage tax.”

Portland Business Alliance endorsement of new local taxes passed in 2020:

  1. Multnomah County Business Income Tax

  2. Metro HereTogether Homeless Services Tax

Portland Business Alliance support of proposed taxes on November ballot:

  1. Oregon Measure 108: Tobacco and E-Cigarette Tax (Yes for a Healthy Future)

  2. Portland Measure 26-215: Public Schools Bond (mailer noting our support)

  3. Portland Measure 26-213: Portland Parks Levy (op-ed noting our support)

While attacking local businesses, Metro’s campaign continues to rake in hundreds of thousands of dollars from out-of-state companies who stand in line to benefit from big contracts if the measure passes. Metro has raised nearly half of their campaign cash from out-of-state companies to promote a tax on local workers that neither Metro, nor most of their out of state donors will pay. 

“Why would these companies suddenly be so interested in a local ballot measure?” asked Hoan. “Perhaps it is because they expect to make tens of millions in contracts from Metro. Evidently Metro is perfectly fine taking hundreds of thousands of dollars from ‘greedy’ corporations, who stand to directly benefit from a tax on local jobs. We are calling on Metro to either return all of this money immediately or finally stop their attacks on local employers.”

“Every dollar we raise is from local businesses trying to keep their doors open and protect their employee’s paychecks," said Hoan. "It is hypocritical for Metro to call our region’s employers ‘greedy,’ while depending on out-of-state corporate contributions who don’t have stakes in our community.”

For more information: StopTheMetroWageTax.org/.


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The Portland Business Alliance is Greater Portland’s Chamber of Commerce. Our mission is to create opportunity and advance well-being for all who live and work in the greater Portland and SW Washington region. Our vision is a healthy and resilient business ecosystem. Visit PortlandAlliance.com for more information.