Senate bill would slash income tax to 4.75 percent
BY BARBARA HOBEROCK World Capitol Bureau
Friday, February 08, 2013
2/08/13 at 6:11 AM
OKLAHOMA CITY - A tax-cut proposal by a Tulsa lawmaker would cost less than one being touted by Gov. Mary Fallin because it would eliminate some tax credits, Senate President Pro Tem Brian Bingman said Thursday.
Bingman, R-Sapulpa, and House Speaker T.W. Shannon, R-Lawton, discussed the first week of session with reporters on Thursday.
In her State of the State address Monday, Gov. Mary Fallin proposed reducing the state income tax rate to 5 percent from 5.25 percent.
Her proposal is not tied to revenue growth or the elimination of tax credits.
Bingman called the proposal a good "starting point."
Fallin's plan would cost $40.7 million in fiscal year 2014 and $105.8 million in fiscal year 2015. Growth revenue would be used to pay for it, officials said.
But Sen. Mike Mazzei, R-Tulsa, has a bill that would reduce the rate to 4.75 percent by eliminating some tax credits, Bingman said.
Senate Bill 585 will be the primary Senate tax reform bill, Mazzei said.
Figures indicating how much Mazzei's proposal would cost were not available.
Bingman said Mazzei's bill, because it is tied to tax credits, would cost less money than Fallin's proposal.
Last year, legislative efforts to reduce the income tax by eliminating tax credits faced stiff opposition from those receiving them. Efforts to reduce taxes ultimately failed. The Senate will take up the issue again, Bingman said.
"Some of the tax credits are very complicated," he said. "We have so many. So there is an education process with the Legislature, and there was a strong lobby group out there to protect. Everybody has got a tax credit and everybody wants to protect that, so it is not an easy thing."
Although the House has been cool to passing bonds for things such as building a popular culture museum in Tulsa, finishing the Native American Cultural Center and Museum in Oklahoma City, and fixing the crumbling state Capitol, Bingman said a bond issue needs to be discussed.
"I think that our backlog is so great that bonding has to be on the table when we talk about how we catch up," he said.
Meanwhile, Shannon said Fallin laid out an aggressive agenda that mirrors a lot of what House Republicans support.
He said he thinks there will be a lot of agreement among Fallin, House Republicans and Senate Republicans.
Republicans control both houses and the executive branch.
Original Print Headline: Tulsan's tax-cut bill touted over Fallin's proposal
Barbara Hoberock 405-528-2465
Senate President Pro Tem Brian Bingman: He said the governor's proposal for cutting the state income tax is a good "starting point," but he prefers a Senate bill that would provide a bigger tax cut while eliminating certain tax breaks. Bingman admitted that eliminating tax credits will be staunchly opposed by some groups