Timber corporations are making record profits, but are they paying their fair share to support Oregon?
An investigation by OPB and the Oregonian revealed that Wall Street real estate trusts and investment funds began gaining control over the Oregon’s private forestlands. These companies profited at the expense of rural communities by logging more aggressively with fewer environmental protections than in neighboring states, while reaping the benefits of timber tax cuts that have cost Oregon counties at least $3 billion in the past three decades,
OREGON COUNTIES LOST $3 BILLION
As reported by The Oregonian and OPB:
“Polk County, home to Falls City, has lost approximately $29 million in revenue from timber sales on federal land. By comparison, the elimination of the severance tax and lower property taxes for private timber companies have cost the county at least $100 million.”
“You have that tension between this industry that still employs people, but we’re losing some of the benefits of that relationship,” Falls City Mayor Jeremy Gordon said. “As those jobs diminish, there’s less and less support to subsidize that industry in the community.”
The legislature has proposed to restore fairness for rural communities and direct needed funds to counties, water providers, health care, schools and fire management. Click on the button below to let your representative know where you stand!
To learn more about how companies profited while communities like Falls City, Corbett, Yachats, Rockaway Beach, Yamhill, Salem, Dallas and others paid the price read the stories by The Oregonian, OPB and ProPublica:
“While the industry today still rakes in billions of dollars annually, it’s starkly different from the one that helped build and enrich the state. Oregon lowered taxes and maintained weaker environmental protections on private forestlands than neighboring states in exchange for jobs and economic investment from the timber industry. Despite such concessions, the country’s top lumber-producing state has fewer forest-sector jobs per acre and collects a smaller share of logging profits than Washington or California.” – As reported by OPB & The Oregonian, June 11, 2020.
Do you think rural Oregonians have a right to be supported by the large timber corporations that profit off of logging the forests in those same communities? Let your representative know where you stand!
Compared with our neighboring state of Washington:
Oregon has 39% more forestland
Cuts 46% more timber, and yet…
Washington collects roughly 3 times more in taxes when trees are cut than Oregon
Forest practices are damaging drinking water supplies around the state, costing communities millions.
Firefighting costs are escalating, but timber owners’ contributions for firefighting are not.
Restore tax fairness to achieve the following:
- Generate property tax funding for local schools, police, water systems, fire and more
- Address impacts to forest waters from aerial spray of toxic chemicals
- Create fire safe communities, support emergency services and firefighting