Path Home Shows 2015 Show Archive November 2015 Show 1547 A 1-Cent Solution?

A 1-Cent Solution?

The OCPA filed legal papers in the Oklahoma Supreme Court to block a 1-cent sales tax increase.
A 1-Cent Solution?

A 1-Cent Solution?

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OCPA Impact

Oklahoma Department of Education

Show Details

Show 1547: A 1-Cent Solution?
Air Date: November 22, 2015



Rob McClendon: Well, an effort to let Oklahomans vote whether they want to better fund education with a penny sales tax is now on hold. A lawsuit filed by the advocacy group OCPA Impact maintains the proposal violates state constitutional requirements that such a measure embrace just a single subject. According to legal papers filed before the Oklahoma Supreme Court, the penny sales tax initiative bundles four items together: a pay raise for teachers, educational funding improvements, a new penny sales tax and a change in the appropriation process at the state Capitol. Now, OCPA Impact is the lobbying partner of the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, a conservative think tank that pushes for smaller government and cuts in state services.

David Boren: Oklahoma’s economy will decline if we do not invest more in education.

Rob: University of Oklahoma President David Boren is a backer of the penny sales tax initiative and says, quote, “It is a shame that any organization would try to stop the people of Oklahoma from having the right to vote on such an important issue to the children of Oklahoma and our state’s future.” Now, even if the Supreme Court challenge fails, backers of the penny tax will still need to get the language of the petition approved, then collect as many as 130,000 signatures to get the issue on next November’s ballot. Now, according to the Tax Foundation, Oklahoma ranks 32nd in our overall tax burden; property taxes are particularly low, coming in at 11th lowest in the nation, but our sales tax is the 38th highest. Estimates are the extra penny sales tax will cost the average Oklahoma household $262 a year. Now, at the same time, education spending in Oklahoma has been cut by 23 percent since 2008, and in state-by-state comparisons, that ranks us 43rd in what we spend in the classroom.