Breaking News: Sen. Morse Announces Retirement

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A Statesman Hangs up His Boots

Today, in an unexpected move, Oregon Sen. Frank Morse announced that he is retiring from the Senate effective September 17.

Morse was a 2007 recipient of OBA’s highest honor, the Statesman of the Year Award. He represents the Corvallis-Albany region and has served the citizens of Oregon as a remarkably thoughtful state Senator.

“Frank has been everything you could want in a public servant – thoughtful, independent and non-partisan. He doesn’t care about party. He cares about Oregon,” said Ryan Deckert, OBA President. “We will all miss you, Frank, and the sense of stability you brought to public discourse.”

Morse was first elected to the state Senate in 2002 following a lifelong career in business as the President and CEO of Morse Bros. Inc., a leading Oregon construction materials company. He was re-elected in 2006 and 2010. A successor will be appointed by the Boards of Commissioners in Benton and Linn Counties within 30 days from the date of resignation.

View the 2007 Statesman Award tribute to Morse here:

In other news…..
OBA Panel Addresses Senate Finance Committee

As members of OBA’s working group on tax competitiveness and the OBA Business & Finance Policy Committee, a panel of OBA experts testified before the Senate Finance & Revenue Committee today (9/14/12) during its discussion of Oregon tax competitiveness.

Harvey Platt, former owner of Platt Electric; Randy Miller, President, The Moore Company; and Erik Amos, Tax Director, Columbia Sportswear, shared their views and the work of OBA on how Oregon can become more competitive in regards to state tax structure.

Platt, quoting figures from an annual CEO survey, said Oregon’s competitiveness rating has slipped from 24th place in the nation in 2009 to 42nd place in 2012.

The panel’s discussion topics ranged from single sales to capital gains to income tax to competition with neighboring states with different tax structures.

“Hopefully we will have the gumption to overcome political obstacles and achieve true tax reform,” said Platt.