In some good news, with the recent passing of the latest Federal stimulus package Oregon is slated to receive $4.2B. $2.6B is targeted directly at the state, the remaining $1.6B will be share among cities and counties.
This is good news there are a lot of state legislative bills currently focused on revenue raising/tax increases and this funding will take the pressure off the need to do that. We would hope to see very few bills targeted at raising revenue. Another thing likely to take the pressure off raising revenue/tax bills is that the latest economic forecast for this biennium shows the kicker tax being triggered.
On a positive note, SB 842 is written to make sure that federal stimulus payments are not taxable.
At the Federal level, America’s Recovery Act doesn’t tax unemployment benefits and there is a drive to connect to that and make sure federal unemployment is not taxed at the state level.
State Legislative Bills we are tracking include:
Good bills still alive:
- HB 2343 – Allows local government to suspend Enterprise Zone requirements
- SB 330 – Tax credit for forgiven rents for landlords
- SB 727 – May allow Oregon businesses to claim federal ‘State & Local Tax’ (SALT) deduction in excess of $10,000 federal limit
- SB 780 – COVID liability protections for health care facilities and providers
- SB 842 – Tax exemption for federal stimulus payment to Oregon taxpayers
Good bills dead:
- HB 2638 – General COVID liability protections for employers
- SB 531 – Right to compensation for businesses closed by Governor’s orders
Challenging bills still alive:
- HB 2253, HB 2457 – Levies state tax on PPP loans
- HB 2474 – Expansion of Oregon family leave law, applies to all small businesses
- HB 2489 – Re-classification of independent contractors as employees
- HB 2814 – ‘Indirect Source’ requirement for building projects
- HB 3171 – Adds insurance in the Unlawful Trade Practices Act
- HB 3305 – Prohibits diesel fuel
- SB 137, HB 2839 – Disconnects businesses from Federal CARES Act tax benefits
- SB 139 – Eliminates Oregon’s ‘Small Business Tax Cut’ law
- SB 483 – Retaliation presumption for employment actions taken within 60 days of whistleblower complaint
- SB 716 – Requires employer to accommodate employee day care schedule
- SB 801, SB 802 – Workers’ comp COVID presumption
Challenging bills dead:
- HB 2205 – Private Attorney General Act (PAGA), authorize private lawsuits for alleged violations of law and rules enforced by agencies
- HB 2974 – Prohibits conditioning employment on refraining from drug use
- SB 477 – Lower burden of proof for unlawful discrimination claims
- SB 650 – “Fair Share” tax on employers that do not provide health insurance benefits
These bills represent the “playing field” for the business community for the next three weeks.
The next major deadline for bills is April 13th. As such, these next three weeks are sure to be chaotic as committees further refine the list of policies that will be moving forward this session.
If you have interest or concern about these or other bills, please email Debi Mollahan, CEO, Tigard Chamber at Debi@tigardchamber.org
The American Rescue Plan, the recently federal stimulus signed into law among other things contains two big programs targeted at specific sectors– The Shuttered Venue Operator Grant (SVOG) and the Restaurant Revitalization Fund
SBA will administer both programs. Applications are expected to open for the shuttered venue program on April 8th and hopefully soon for the Restaurant Revitalization fund as well.