Published: June 20, 2017

Polls show broad public support among likely 2018 voters in Oregon

Supporters of a corporate transparency ballot measure filed more than 1200 signatures in Salem yesterday, clearing the first major hurdle in the ballot qualification process. Recent polling shows 73 percent of likely 2018 voters in Oregon support the measure.

“A lot of Oregon’s tax policy is made without concrete information about the taxes individual corporations pay in Oregon,” said Steven Demarest, President of SEIU Local 503. “Legislators and the public would be much better equipped to write policy that funds state services while taking into account the interests of businesses if corporate taxes were more transparent.”

The measure, Initiative Petition 25, will require corporations to file tax disclosure statements with the Secretary of State, require the Secretary of State to make disclosure statements public via the internet, and allow the Secretary of State to impose penalties for noncompliance with filing requirements.

A recent survey of likely 2018 Oregon voters found that 73 percent support a measure requiring certain corporations to publicly disclose tax information. The research shows that support is high among all major demographic and geographic groups. A memo on the research is available here.

“Corporations claim they can’t afford more, but there is no way to actually know,” said Stacy Chamberlain, Oregon AFSCME Interim Executive Director. “It’s in everyone’s best interest if legislators and the public have all the information at their disposal as our state works to address that imbalance.”

During the Measure 97 campaign, some corporations spoke publicly about the impact a tax increase would have on their bottom line. The public was never able to evaluate the accuracy of those statements because the necessary information is not available. With corporate transparency, it will be possible to tell what is true and what is simply political rhetoric.

The measure will now move into the title drafting process, the final step before proponents can begin gathering signatures to put the measure on the November 2018 ballot.