Yesterday, an Oklahoma Senate committee advanced a bill that would reverse the .25-percent income tax cut the Oklahoma GOP promised to their wealthy donors (pictured above) in 2014. The move, which even The Oklahoman labeled as a surprise, contradicts recent statements by Governor Fallin who recently said that keeping the cuts intact "was the right thing to do."
In a surprise move Tuesday, a Senate committee cleared a bill that would reverse a 0.25 cut in the state income tax rate.Gov. Mary Fallin, Senate President Pro Tem Brian Bingman and House Speaker Jeff Hickman all want to keep the reduction in place even though the state is facing a $1.3 billion revenue shortfall.Sen. Mike Mazzei, who wrote the bill, said this is the single biggest thing the Legislature can do to help close the budget hole."If we don't move forward with some financial reforms like this, we literally will have to cut education by $400 million, according to my analysis, and teachers won't see a pay raise for years," said Mazzei, R-Tulsa.He also said the 10-2 vote in the Senate Finance Committee bodes well for the bill's chances before the full Senate.
I can't believe I'm about to write this, but I actually agree with an Oklahoma Senate Committee on something. Delaying, if not totally eliminating, the tax cut is a smart thing to do, especially when that state is facing a freaking $1.2-billion budget crisis. Plus, as this graphic from the Oklahoma Policy Institute clearly shows, the income tax cut plan overwhelmingly favors wealthy oil barons, energy executives, mineral rights holders, hospital administrators, bankers, ranchers, lawyers, doctors, professional basketball players, weathermen, reality show winners, etc:
Boy, don't you feel sorry for the Governor's friends who report (keyword: report) at least $1,444,000 in annual income? They're now going to pay $2,127 more in taxes! Gasp! That's awful! Hopefully they'll still be able to put their Whole Foods on the table and won't have to layoff their maids, nannies, butlers, and all the other positions they fund as job creators.
Anyway, it will be interesting to see how this turns out. Once again, Mary Fallin and other GOP leaders in legislature have called for the tax cuts to still be implemented. Since rich powerful people usually win out, expect that to happen.