Tom Lewis says his east Portland neighbors have voted time and again with the rest of the city to raise taxes, but they’ve seen little of that money come back in the form of improved schools, transportation and parks.

That’s bad enough. But it also turns out that Lewis and his neighbors are paying more than their fair share of those taxes compared to other parts of the city.

“We’ve got ‘sucker’ written on our forehead,” he says.

Last year, Lewis’ property taxes came out to $15.74 per $1,000 in value. Across town, a similar house just off trendier Northeast Alberta Street is worth twice as much, but its owners paid just $4.59 per $1,000 in value.

Oregon’s property tax system has dramatically distorted the tax burden in the Portland area, an analysis by The Oregonian/OregonLive found, pushing responsibility for basic government services off the backs of one set of homeowners and onto others.

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