Unexpectedly high state tax collections give new life to opponents of the corporate kicker income-tax refund. Kicker critics' longstanding question of "why refund money to business just because Oregon has underestimated actual tax revenues" became PDR (pretty damn relevant) last week when higher budget numbers came in while schools and state police ache for cash.

The Cascade AIDS Project's Beth Myrick is a total hottie. How can we be so crass? As a foil for Maxim magazine's list of the Hot 100 women, has compiled an honor roll of smart and savvy ladies around the country who truly kick ass. Among them: Myrick, a 19-year-old volunteer at the Portland AIDS group who creates marketing materials for young people.

Women who prefer wearing micro-minis and pumps for a stroll will no longer have to avoid Northeast 82nd Avenue if the City Council passes Mayor Tom Potter's proposed reform of Portland's drug- and prostitution-free zones. Potter's plan would require police to actually make an arrest or issue a citation (rather than the looser standard of just suspecting somebody of prostitution) before excluding anyone from the zones.


The Bush Administration's got some 'splaining to do about new evidence the government eavesdropped on members of a Muslim charity in Southern Oregon. The charity is suing the feds for wiretapping conversations, and The Washington Post, long a trusted source for Oregon news, reports that sealed evidence may include a log of tapped calls.

The Federal Communications Commission forced the Portland Radio Authority to walk the plank last week, shutting down a beloved three-and-a-half-year-old pirate radio station at 96.7 FM. See this week's Riff City (page 29) for more on how The Oregonian helped push PRA into the drink. Arrr.

An accidental $172 million deficit looked bad for the state Department of Human Services. But this looks downright dirty. A state audit last week accused DHS of playing a shell game with $87 million in its budget to avoid spending limits set by the Legislature, which would be a violation of state law.