Transportation agency’s board votes on increasing tax to boost service.
BY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR
TriMet board of director approved Wednesday an increasing tax to boost service.
In the first year, it would raise $4.3 million, and by the tenth year, the city would receive $43 million.
“TriMet has worked hard over the past several years to put itself on solid financial footing for the long-term, and along with the improved economy, must now focus on expanding service to improve access to jobs, education and give people a convenient alternative to driving,” board President Bruce Warner said.
The vote came just days after TriMet opened the new MAX Orange Line between Portland and Milwaukie. The additional revenue is not to be spent on major capital construction projects, however.
(SOURCE: Portland Tribune)
It will be implemented in January.
For local businesses, that amounts to a 14 percent increase once fully implemented after 10 years. For a small business with a $1.5 million payroll, that means their their annual payroll tax bill will increase by $1,500, from $10,856 to $12,356, once the hike is fully phased in after 10 years.
The state Legislature authorized the increase back in 2009, but required that transit agencies wait until the region was recovering from the Great Recession to implement it.
TriMet was until 2014 still seeing annual increases in its payroll tax rate from its last increase, which was also phased in over 10 years.
Employers will be able to revisit the tax in 2020.