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April 17, 2021

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Forecast: Oregon economists predict $571 million ‘kicker’ tax rebate

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Oregon taxpayers are on track to get a “kicker” tax rebate worth a combined $570.5 million next year, state economists told lawmakers in the latest quarterly forecast on Wednesday.

That is the upshot of aggregate incomes in the state exceeding economists’ expectations well before the pandemic, as lawmakers assembled the current state budget.

State economist Mark McMullen told lawmakers “this massive helicopter drop of a massive amount of federal aid” played a key role in raising incomes, through stimulus payments to individuals and enhanced unemployment benefits. Absent that federal aid, Oregonians’ aggregate income would essentially be flat, said state economist Josh Lehner.

“We haven’t seen this in decades, this level of income support coming from the federal government,” Lehner said.

Taxpayers would receive the personal income tax rebate as a credit on their 2021 taxes when they file next year.

The forecast is good news for the state budget, with general fund and lottery revenues expected to come in $642.7 million higher than expected as of November for the 2019-2021 budget.

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