To avoid confusion and misunderstanding when considering your vote (Kennewick residents) for the upcoming sales tax increase for the Public Facilities District, a clarification is needed regarding a report in the Saturday, April 30 edition.
It was reported by Ty Beaver through an interview with Barbara Johnson that anyone shopping in Kennewick will pay sales tax. This is simply not true. Those from Oregon (as well as Montana and Alaska) who shop here (gas and restaurant shopping exempted) are not required to pay sales tax, thus allowing them to enjoy our infrastructure free.
The state Department of Revenue department estimates the lost sales tax equates to about $60 million in revenue per year, with most shopping occurring in Vancouver and the Tri-Cities. This figure does not include Washington residents who find a way to buy and register a car in Oregon, thus avoiding sales tax and vehicle fees. Also we need to remember that Oregon does not reciprocate in taxes. If you happen to live in Washington and work in Oregon you will pay Oregon income tax.
While I support the improvements, especially the “Link,” I will give serious consideration to yet another tax increase. Please consider before you cast your vote.
Michael Cochrane, Kennewick