Oregon Law a Concern for Small Businesses?

Every year, one of the biggest issues cited as weighing heavily on small business owners is how much the companies have to pay in taxes, and just about any change to those laws at the state or federal level results in a lot of consternation. Now, such a law is being considered in the Oregon state legislature, and entrepreneurs there have expressed some concerns.

HB 3177 is a controversial law in Oregon because it would make it easier for state lawmakers to eliminate a number of tax cuts, deductions, credits and other aspects of the tax code, according to a report from the Oregon Small Business Association. And while that doesn’t necessarily threaten small businesses in particular, it nonetheless remains a point of concern for many owners who rely on being able to cut their taxes as much as possible each year as a means of keeping their costs down.

Specifically, the law would allow tax changes to be made with just a 3/5 majority of votes in favor, lower than the previous threshold, which was put into place by public referendum almost two decades ago, the report said. Meanwhile, certain types of tax changes – such as those for home interest deductions, corporate or personal income rules, and so on – have all been exempted from the law or made a permanent part of the tax code, but experts are concerned that many small businesses don’t get the same assurances.

Why is this an issue?
The reason for concern among small business owners in the state is clear, the report said. Tax laws can now be changed much more easily, and more or less at the drop of a hat, which makes it far more difficult for small businesses in particular to comply.

“Removing some of these protections again puts Oregon small businesses on alert and creates an future of unpredictability and looming tax threats,” the Oregon Small Business Association wrote. “Predictability s a key element when a small business owner takes a giant risk with his life’s savings and talent to create his or her own business.”

Owners who want to financially prepare their companies for any such eventualities might do well to consider the benefits of keeping their other costs as minimized as possible. That could include shopping around for the most affordable small business insurance policies – including those for liability insurance – to potentially save thousands annually.