Oregon Residents Receive Tax Rebate Check – “Kicker” Refund

Posted by Dennis Pease on Tuesday, December 25th, 2007 at 11:42pm.

Oregon taxpayers received some extra spending money just in time for Christmas.

Oregon’s law requires the state to rebate taxpayers when tax collections are above projections by more than 2 percent. The state is refunding $1.1 billion in rebates. 

Typical with any government entity, all has not gone smoothly though. Many residents counting on the “kicker” checks to be in time for Christmas found out that theirs had mistakenly been sent to charities and they are waiting to hear if they will get them back. While approximately 12,000 people chose to send their rebate checks to charities totaling about $6.7 million. Many charities have really cranked up their advertising to entice taxpayers to donate some of that money. It is the season for giving, so having a little extra money to donate if you want is great.

Most people got about $600, but some of the wealthiest Oregonian’s, including Nike co-founder Phil Knight, averaged nearly $800,000.

Oregon's economy has been much healthier than the earlier part of the decade, outpacing much of the country. That boom was fueled in part by real estate and growth in the tech sector or the "Silicon Forest" as it is often called.

The unexpected growth raised tax collections about 20 percent beyond the most optimistic projections from budget officials setting the stage for the largest rebate or “kicker” refund since voters approved the refund system in 1979.

Just like anything else there are people on both sides of the aisle on the kicker refund. If you ask me though, any time you can get the government to refund some of our hard earned money rather than trust them to spend it wisely, it’s a good day.

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