LOCAL 2067
Salem Revenue Task Force
Updated On: Mar 25, 2024

Kathy Knock has been selected to serve on the City's 2024 Revenue Task Force as the employee representative.

The purpose of the revenue Task Force is to explore new, additional revenue sources and adjustment to fees to sustain those services that do not have a dedicated revenue stream. The meetings will be held once a month through June 30, 2024 and are open to the public. The task force is charged with making recommendations to the City Council in early July. The City is required to have a balanced budget. While the Revenue Task Force considers additional revenue options, the City's Budget Committee will be reviewing spending cuts. 

Ways you can participate

  • Community Survey (community members will be contacted by the survey company) – April 2-8
  • Town Hall Meetings (open to all members of the public)
    • April 10, in-person at Baxter Hill Community Hall
    • April 16, virtually via Zoom
    • April 23, in-person at Center 50+

Task Force Meetings

Meetings will be held about once a month. 

  • March 18, 2024
    • Reviewed the focus group findings (101 participants in all 8 wards):
      • The community is interested in clearer:
        • Demonstrations of trade-offs in the current budget conversation
        • Information about the source, or reason, for the current budget shortfall
        • Information regarding what the state, county, and city pay
        • Communications from the city regarding Salem’s unique struggle with institutional property burden (heavy presence of non-property tax paying institutions)
        • The essential question: if you raise money, how will you spend it?
      • Safety includes vibrant parks, thriving businesses, and safe places to walk and ride bikes.
      • Concerns about City infrastructure
    • Develop a decision framework, comparing the task force member views with the focus group views:
      • Removed "Use in peer cities" as a decision criteria
      • Added "Estimated revenue potential" and "Impact Timeline" 
    • Begin narrowing the revenue options to be explored
      • Moved the following revenue options into a separate legislative packet since they cannot be enacted without state legislation:
        • Local Marijuana Tax Increase
        • Payments in lieu of taxes from county and federal buildings
        • Payment in lieu of taxes from the state government
      • High-interest options to be explored in more detail:
        • Business License Fees
        • A1 Annex developed areas within the Urban Growth Boundary
        • Local Option Property Tax Levy
        • Corporate Income Tax
        • Intergovernmental agreements and entities outlined in ORS 190
        • Personal income tax
        • Property tax on vehicles
      • Low-interest options not moving forward for further discussions at this time:
        • Land value tax
        • Tolls on Marion Street or Center Street Bridges
        • Payroll Tax (Employee-Paid)
        • Solid Waste Collection Fee
        • Street Lighting District
        • Bicycle Registration Fee
        • First Responder Fee
        • Rental Housing Fee
        • Sweetened Beverages Distributor Tax
  • February 22, 2024
    • Reviewed revenue targets - The consultant presented three revenue targets to help define the scope of the gap:
      • Retention - maintain current staff levels, recognizing that services will continue to face costs as costs go up.
      • Maintain service levels - Add staff as needed to match population growth
      • Shelter services - Raise the revenue needed to continue providing shelter services.
    • Recommendation from task force: Raise enough revenue to restore staffing and services to the pre-2008 recession level, maintain those services as the population grows and continue the shelter services.
    • Initial review of revenue options.
    • Public Town Halls scheduled
      • April 10, 6:30-8:30 pm in South Salem, Baxter Hill Community Hall, 1780 Baxter Road SE
      • April 16, Virtual
      • April 23, 6:30-8:30 pm in North Salem, Center 50+, 2615 Portland Road NE
  • January 30, 2024
    • Reviewed what the problem is and how we got here - primarily the impacts of Measures 5 and 50, restricting property tax collections for all local governments.
    • Reviewed the three options considered by the last Revenue Task Force:
      • Increase City Operation Fee
      • Local option levies (somewhat limited by Measures 5 and 50)R
      • Payroll tax on employees (recently failed), employers or both.

Additional Background Resources

For more information on the City's budget situation:

  • General Fund Budget Frequently Asked Questions
  • General Fund Simulation Tool
  • Budget Committee Agenda from January 10, 2024 containing fund balances for each fund and the financial five-year forecast. Key take-aways for year ending June 30, 2023:
    • City total resources = $916 million
    • City total expenses = $522 million
    • General fund is the portion of the resources and expenses supported primarily by property taxes:
      • Total general fund resources = $197 million
      • Total general fund expenses = $161 million
    • Five-year forecast (Page 26 of the agenda packet)
      • The forecast for the General Fund demonstrates a structural imbalance between current revenue and the cost of providing services. (The City’s General Fund supports operations in the areas of public safety, planning, code enforcement, public library, municipal court, parks and recreation, urban development, and internal support services that provide a Citywide benefit.)
  • City Budget Reduction Scenarios from September 18, 2023 work session:
    • Elimination of all new proposed positions such as additional park ranger and compliance officer positions.
    • Beginning in FY 2024-2025 a total of 21 positions would be cut: seven parks maintenance positions, 12 Library positions (closure of West Salem Branch Library), one Police graffiti removal position, and the youth services coordinator and program.
    • FY 2024-2025, funding for all social service grants and existing sheltering services supported by the General Fund like safe parking and warming shelters would cease.
    • FY 2025-2026, one fire station (nine firefighters) would be eliminated, along with 12 police officers and staff.
    • FY 2027-2028 another fire station (nine firefighters) would be eliminated.
    • Increased fees for parks, recreation, and Center 50+, along with a redirection of Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) revenue away from third party grantees to fund City parks maintenance.  

Contact Info
AFSCME Local 2067
1400 Tandem Avenue NE
Salem, OR 97301

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