Oregon’s tax collections will be down by about $200-million from projections for the two-year state budget cycle that began last month. It’s unlikely that any immediate cuts in government spending will be required because of the down-turn.
First of all, it’s still early in the cycle and second, because lawmakers had set aside significant reserves for just such an occasion. House Republican Leader Kevin Cameron from Salem, was quick to claim political credit for his party saying they fought pressure to spend all revenue and worked to create a $460-million reserve fund.
Tina Kotek, House Democratic Leader put a more positive face on the news and pointed out continued improvements in the state due to job creation in the private sector.
House Co-Speaker Arnie Roblan, a Coos Bay Democrat, said the economic forecast reflects factors that are beyond the control of local lawmakers… he said debt crises in Europe, political gridlock in Washington DC and a restless stock market are to blame. He also pointed out that there will be two more forecasts between now and the next legislative session that begins in February.