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Finances of Oregon.

PART TWO

OREGON'S SYSTEM OF STATE REVENUES.

CHAPTER I.

Taxation.

State governmental activities in Oregon have been supported through revenues derived from the following sources:

  1. Taxation, including license charges imposed upon insurance companies, and more recently upon corporations in general.
  2. Sales of public lands and from loan of proceeds.
  3. State loans.
  4. Minor miscellaneous activities.

Taxation has uniformly been the main source and, as the public domain of the state has been almost all disposed of without sufficing to accumulate funds sufficient to yield an income representing any considerable fraction of the growing needs of the state treasury, taxes must continue to be the almost exclusive reliance for state and local revenues.

As already noted, the constitutional provisions pertaining to taxation have up to this time, made the general property tax virtually the exclusive form of taxation possible. There have been, however, subsequent tO' the first few years, minor sources yielding revenues for the state treasury. The proceeds of a poll tax were used by the state government from 1864 to 1877; a special license tax upon Chinamen yielded some state as well as local revenue in southern mining counties during the sixties; an inheritance tax has produced returns since 1904; insurance company licenses with stamp and later net premium taxes have been collected since 1872 ; and a general corporation license tax has been a revenue producer of considerable importance since 1904. These auxiliary sources of state rev-