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Website price discrimination based on if you are a PC or Mac

June 30, 2012 --

CEO Barney Harford of the travel site, Orbitz, takes on the tough questions on how websites practice price discrimination based on if you are a PC or Mac. Is it legal? price descrimination? Watch the CNN video below.

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NFIB: Health Care Cost Reduction Act of 2012

June 29, 2012 --

By NFIB,

On behalf of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the nation’s leading small business advocacy organization, I am writing in support of H.R. 436, the Health Care Cost Reduction Act of 2012. This legislation would repeal tax increases from the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and would allow consumers greater control over their health care dollars. H.R. 436 will be considered an NFIB Key Vote for the 112th Congress.

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Supreme Court denies overtime to certain sales reps

June 28, 2012 --

Supreme Court agrees with Ninth Circuit that drug company representatives are ‘salesmen’
Ater Wynne LLP
NW Law frim

Last week the Supreme Court affirmed a decision of the Ninth Circuit holding that pharmaceutical sales representatives are not entitled to overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act because they are covered by the FLSA’s “outside sales” exemption. In Christopher v. SmithKline, the Court issued a 5-4 decision, with the majority reasoning that “[the representatives were] hired for their sales experience. They were trained to close each sales call by obtaining the maximum commitment possible from the physician. They worked away from the office, with minimal supervision, and they were rewarded for their efforts with incentive compensation.”

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A plan to fix the new hole in workers’ comp law

June 27, 2012 --

By J.L. Wilson
Associated Oregon Industries

As AOI informed its members in March, a recent decision by the Oregon Court of Appeals will have huge liability ramifications for owners and members of limited liability companies (LLC’s) in Oregon.  In this case – Antonio Cortez v. Nacco Materials Handling Group, Inc. – the Appeals Court ruled that the exclusive remedy provision of Oregon’s workers’ comp law, ORS 656.018, does not protect the members of an LLC from tort liability.

In other words, under the ruling, the owners and members of an Oregon-based LLC are considered personally liable for damages arising from workplace injuries.

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Economic rise & fall of China, America & Europe over 2,000 years

June 26, 2012 --

By Patrick Emerson,, OSU Economics professor
Oregon Economics Blog

Via The Economist:

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Portland increases hotel tax hike to 14.5%

June 25, 2012 --

New Hotel Tax to Promote Tourism
By Oregon Tax News

The Portland City Council approved a new two percent hotel tax intended to help promote Portland tourism. The assessment applies to hotels with more than 50 rooms and takes effect on Oct. 1, 2012. Called the Portland Tourism Improvement District, the program will raise an estimated $6.6 million annually for tourism advertising, branding, promotions and sponsorships. City officials hope the fund will increase hotel occupancy, which in turn will increase a separate lodging tax collected by the city and county.

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Small business has a blindspot to computer viruses

June 24, 2012 --

By U.S. Chamber of Commerce

According to this new infographic published by Veracode, 50% of small business owners think they were too small to be a target of a cyberattack, and yet 72% of the known hacker breaches that occured in 2011 affected businesses with 100 employees or fewer. The infographic, which contains some startling facts and figures, also outlines simple and inexpensive steps small business owners can take to protect themselves against cyber attacks. You can find more tips in the U.S. Chamber’s cybersecurity guide.

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10 Best Entrepreneur Nations (Canada beats U.S.)

June 23, 2012 --

By 24/7 WallStreet

1) New Zealand
No. of procedures necessary to start a business: 1
No. of days to start of business: 1
2010 GDP: $134 billion
Percent employment by companies with 250+ employees: 42.1 percent

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29 of 50 states have repealed their death tax. Oregon next?

June 22, 2012 --

Petition Drive to Repeal Oregon’s Death Tax Underway
By Oregon NFIB

In the last 10 years, 29 of 50 states have done away with their estate/inheritance taxes. Economic studies show that eliminating a state estate tax creates more jobs by reducing business departures and by encouraging more businesses to come to a state. This enhances regular income tax revenue which can offset the estate tax revenue loss.

The estate tax, often referred to as “the death tax,” is considered one of the most unfair taxes in the nation. It imposes a final tax on the deceased person’s money and possessions, even though they were all properly taxed as they were acquired. Yes, it’s a double tax!

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Identity thieves get tax refunds from deceased children

June 21, 2012 --

By Oregon Tax News,

Identity thieves are using  deceased people’s  SSN and use it to claim him as a dependent. Then have the IRS send the ridiculously inflated refund to your prepaid debit card.    Thieves spend the refund, and pull the same trick next year.  The scam works when the victim died fairly recently.   If the victim is still alive, the thief files before he does.

Businessweek reported that five-year-old Benny Waters, who died of a brain tumor in September 2010. When his parents tried to file their tax return last year, it was rejected because someone else had already claimed Benny as a dependent. As Benny’s parents said, the experience was akin to having their son stolen. Yet they are far from the only victims. According to IRS, more than 490,000 people have been victimized by this new fraud, and the overall cost to taxpayers has been more than ten billion.

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