The Oregon Republican Party’s response to recent unjust tax passed by the City of Salem

July 14, 2023

Salem, OR—On July 10th, 4 of 8 Salem City Council members and the Salem Mayor passed a new Employee-Paid Payroll Tax. This was done despite significant and vocal opposition from the community, who submitted 128 pieces of written testimony and 46 in-person verbal testimonies against this measure. In contrast, there were only 16 who wrote and 7 who showed up to support this measure. Even though tax increases in the city of Salem are typically referred to the voters, and numerous community members expressly requested this, these 5 individuals chose to ram it through anyway. The tax will go into effect on July 1, 2024, unless we force a referendum and defeat it at the ballot box.

This tax will not only impact those who live within the city limits of Salem but also those whose employer is located within the city. This is true even if the employee does not live within the city limits themselves: independent contractors and remote employees are also being hit. This is the very definition of “taxation without representation!” 

To add insult to injury, employers will be charged with collecting these taxes. This will drive up administrative and payroll costs for these companies while doing nothing to help revenue or competitiveness.

The Oregon Republican Party is joining with other community leaders in the fight to stand against these unjust and unconstitutional taxation measures. Forcing a referendum on this tax will require 4,000 signatures to be collected in 30 days. Signature sheets will be available at the ORP Headquarters starting Monday, July 17th, from 10 am – 2 pm. We are located at 187 High Street NE, Suite 220, in Salem. We’ll also be hitting the streets and hope to see many of our fellow Salemites in the coming days. 

Justin Hwang

Angela Plowhead

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