On Wednesday, the Senate Finance & Revenue Committee held public hearings on bills creating new exemptions to the corporate activity and estate taxes. As a quick note on the estate tax, there are at least 15 measures this session proposing some variation of tax relief from Oregon's estate tax. Although these bills make different changes, they are all trying to address the same problem—Oregon is an outlier among the states for imposing an estate tax and its tax is the country's most aggressive. Massachusetts and Oregon only provide a $1 million exemption to the estate tax whereas the federal government exempts the first $12 million. Oregon does not index its estate tax exemption to inflation, meaning the exemption becomes more aggressive each and every year. As it relates to the big picture of the session's tax politics, the estate tax could become a major policy topic as more middle and upper-middle-class families find themselves falling into the tax because of high real estate values.