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January 22, 2014

Oklahoma governor to propose income tax cut

(Continued)

OKLAHOMA CITY —

It is estimated that a 0.25 percent cut in the state’s income tax rate would cost the state about $120 million annually.

David Blatt, the head of a Tulsa-based think-tank that advocates for increased funding for state services, said plans to push for a tax cut amid a projected $170 million hole in next year’s budget is fiscally irresponsible.

“It defies credibility to say we can afford cutting taxes even deeper when class sizes are rising, corrections officers are risking their lives in overcrowded prisons, and we still don’t have enough foster homes to protect our most vulnerable children,” Blatt said. “These are preventable tragedies, but only if we stop the march of unnecessary tax cuts, take sensible steps to curb unnecessary tax breaks, and invest in Oklahomans.”

Both House Speaker T.W. Shannon and Senate President Pro Tem Brian Bingman have signaled their willingness to support a tax cut this year.

Several GOP members in the House and Senate have proposed a plan to cut the income tax even deeper, with a series of cuts that would drop the rate from 5.25 percent to 4 percent by 2018.

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