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Oregon Legislature Passes Bill to Cut Offshore Tax Haven Abuse

For Immediate Release

Statement by Celeste Meiffren, OSPIRG’s Consumer and Taxpayer Advocate, regarding the passage of House Bill 2460B through the Oregon House and Senate. 

“Today, Oregon took an important step toward ending offshore tax haven abuse with the passage of House Bill 2460B. 

“When companies use offshore tax havens to avoid paying their taxes, the rest of us pick up the tab with cuts to public priorities or higher taxes. These loopholes put small businesses at a competitive disadvantage and undermine public confidence in our tax system.

“OSPIRG research estimates that Oregon’s state budget loses an estimated $283 million in annual revenue as a result of the abuse of offshore tax havens by multinational corporations.*  By treating income that companies list in offshore tax havens as domestic income, House Bill 2460B begins to tackle this problem and will keep an estimated $18 million in Oregon in 2014, and more in future years.*

“For too long, Oregonians have waited for Congress to fix the problem of companies with armies of tax lawyers that disguise profits made in the U.S. as ‘foreign’ income booked to a postal box shell company in places like the Cayman Islands. Rather than wait for Congress to make the first move, Oregon’s legislators have taken matters into their own hands. We commend the Oregon legislature for protecting ordinary Oregonians from shouldering the additional tax burden from the abuse of offshore tax havens by multinational corporations.”

 

* “The Hidden Cost of Offshore Tax Havens: State Budgets Under Pressure from Tax Loophole Abuse,” OSPIRG (January 2013), available at http://ospirg.org/reports/orp/hidden-cost-offshore-tax-havens.
* “Revenue Impact of Proposed Legislation.” Legislative Revenue Office (6-19-13). https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2013R1/Downloads/MeasureAnalysisDocumen...

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