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Lawmaker slams session in newsletter

Ten days after the special session, an Ashland Republican described the session as unnecessary in a newsletter to constituents.

COURTESY PHOTO - State Sen. Alan DeBoer, R-AshlandTen days after the special legislative session to expand business tax breaks, at least one state lawmaker was still writing home to constituents to slam the eight-hour session called by Gov. Kate Brown May 21 as totally unnecessary.

Sen. Alan DeBoer, R-Ashland, wrote in a letter Thursday, May 31, that he was proud of his vote against the governor's bill.

Some Republicans, such as House Republican Leader Rep. Mike McLane of Powell Butte, and Republican gubernatorial nominee Rep. Knute Buehler of Bend voted in favor of the tax break, even as some accused the governor of calling the session purely to score political points during an election year.

The tax cut is available to only about 6,000 sole proprietors and goes largely to those business owners earning more than $200,000 a year — not exactly the kind of "mom and pop" small businesses Brown purported the tax break would benefit.

The median income for an unincorporated sole proprietor is $23,131 to $45,522 a year. Meanwhile the tax break will subtract about $22 million in revenue from state coffers, DeBoer noted.

DeBoer was free to speak him mind. He isn't seeking reelection to his seat, which he won in November 2016, following the death of longtime state senator, Alan Bates.