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Key Bills & Bill Tracking

March 13, 2012 J

Below, find AFP-OK’s position on several key pieces of legislation. The status of these bills will be updated each week, so check back often!

SB 1561 – Brinkley (R) – Internet Sales Tax

This bill is an affiliate and subsidiary tax bill, meaning that a company not physically located in Oklahoma but with affiliates in Oklahoma referring business to that company or owning (more than 80%) of a subsidiary corporation in Oklahoma would be required to collect and remit Oklahoma sales taxes – taxes that are already owed by the consumer in the form of use taxes.

AFP-Oklahoma opposes SB 1561 because it is, essentially, a tax increase.

STATUS: Passed Senate Finance Committee with title stricken, General Order – Senate

HB 3038 – Osborn (R) – Eliminate State Income Tax

This bill would set the maximum tax rate at 5.25% while reducing the minimum state income tax to 2.25% for the 2013 tax year, with the rate decreasing by .25% for 10 years (Laffer Plan). We prefer no trigger, but if we must have one, a 4% trigger vs. a 5% trigger is much better, allowing Oklahoma to eliminate its income taxes years earlier.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because of its potential to spur Oklahoma’s economic growth. A study by Art Laffer’s econometric firm, in partnership with the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, the state’s free-market think tank, found that phasing out the state income tax would more than double personal-income growth, boost the size of Oklahoma’s economy by more than 20 percent, and create an additional 312,000 jobs over the next decade.

STATUS: Passed House Appropriations & Budget Committee with title stricken, General Order –
House

SB 1571
– Jolley (R) – Eliminate State Income Tax

This bill is the Senate’s version of HB 3038 (above), and we support it as well because of its potential to spur Oklahoma’s economic growth. As with HB 3038, we prefer no trigger, but if we must have one, a 4% trigger vs. a 5% trigger is much better, allowing Oklahoma to eliminate its income taxes years earlier.

STATUS: Engrossed – Senate

HB 2649 – Brumbaugh (R) – Eliminate State Income Tax

This bill would reduce the state’s top income tax rate to 5% for the 2013 tax year, with the rate decreasing by .33% for 15 years.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because of its potential to spur Oklahoma’s economic growth.

STATUS: Passed House Appropriations & Budget Committee with title stricken, General Order –
House

HB 3061 – Steele (R) – Eliminate State Income Tax

This bill illustrates Gov. Fallin’s tax plan, called the Oklahoma Tax Reduction and Simplification Act, which replaces Oklahoma’s complicated seven-bracket income tax structure with three new lower, flatter and simpler rates. These tax cuts would go into effect on January 1, 2013, with further income tax reductions by an additional quarter point in every year where the state of Oklahoma hits a revenue growth trigger of 5%, eventually eliminating the income tax.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because of its potential to spur Oklahoma’s economic growth.

STATUS: Passed House Appropriations & Budget Committee with title stricken, General Order –
House

HJR 1089 – Steele (R) & Mazzei (R) – Tax Credit Reform (Eliminate Transferrable Tax Credits)

This joint resolution would require any measure providing for a tax credit to contain provisions pursuant to which any member of the public can determine the identity of any person or entity that benefits from the tax to be reduced and require any tax credit to provide for the creation of new jobs or the retention of existing jobs in Oklahoma, as well as provide other tax credit check-and-balance provisions.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this joint resolution because it will increase accountability, transparency and fiscal responsibility in government.

STATUS: Passed House Rules Committee, General Order – House

SB 1409
– Ford (R) – Virtual Schools’ Rules & Regulations

This bill would require the State Board of Education to develop criteria for the approval of full-time statewide virtual education instruction providers.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because it would get rid of the one-size-fits-all education system and provide students with instructional options.

STATUS: Engrossed – Senate

SB 1816 – Stanislawski (R) – Virtual Schools’ Rules & Regulations

This bill would create a Charter School Sponsoring Commission with the authority to create a statewide virtual school.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because it would get rid of the one-size-fits-all education system and provide students with instructional options.

STATUS: General Order – Senate

HB 2319 – McDaniel, Randy (R) – Pension Reform

This bill would reform the police pension system by requiring police to pay 1% more into the system.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because it is fiscally responsible to ensure sustainable solvency of Oklahoma’s pension systems.

STATUS: Passed House Floor, Referred to Senate Committees (dual assigned bill)

HB 2320 – McDaniel, Randy (R) – Pension Reform

This bill would reform the firefighter pension system by requiring firefighters to pay 1% more into the system.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because it is fiscally responsible to ensure sustainable solvency of Oklahoma’s pension systems.

STATUS: Passed House Floor, Referred to Senate Committees (dual assigned bill)

HB 2322 – McDaniel, Randy (R) – Pension Reform

This bill would reform the Oklahoma Public Employees Retirement System (OPERS) by modifying retirement benefits for elected officials.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because it is fiscally responsible to ensure sustainable solvency of Oklahoma’s pension systems.

STATUS: Passed House Floor, Referred to Senate Committees (dual assigned bill)

HB 2623 – McDaniel, Randy (R) – Pension Reform

This bill that clarifies language regarding state employees convicted as felons for purposes of retirement benefit forfeiture provisions.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because it protects honest, hard-working state employees from having their retirement system drained by convicted felons.

STATUS: Passed House Floor, First Reading in Senate

HJR 1091
– McDaniel, Randy (R) – Constitutional Amendment RE: Proper Management of OK Pensions

This constitutional amendment says:

1. The Legislature can’t divert funds directed to pensions
2. Pension systems must be prudent so as to invest wisely
3. Benefits must have adequate funding (ARC – Annual Required Contribution) meaning past benefits must be funded before new benefits can be passed or funded (i.e. more COLAs, Healthcare, Death Benefits, etc.). This is an incentive to keep debt and cost low.
4. There can be no new benefit enhancement unless there is a complete investigation of its effects on the entire pension system. This last one is to keep future legislatures from adding benefits without paying for them.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this constitutional amendment because it will protect the future of Oklahoma’s pension system by putting in place fiscally responsible guidelines that should have existed all along.

STATUS: Passed House Floor, Referred to Senate Committees (dual assigned bill)

SB 1378 – Bingman (R) – Worker’s Compensation

This bill would allow employers to bypass the current system in favor of an employer’s own, self-contained plan outside the jurisdiction of the Worker’s Compensation Court.

AFP-Oklahoma supports this bill because it will give employers an alternative to state-mandated workers’ compensation insurance and ultimately reduce costs to businesses.

STATUS: General Order – Senate

SB 1629 – Bingman (R) – Oklahoma Healthcare Exchange

This bill would allow Oklahoma to establish and operate the Health Insurance Private Marketplace Network Trust to facilitate access to health insurance and enhance competition in the small employer health insurance markets by administering a premium assistance program.

AFP-Oklahoma opposes this bill because it isn’t State or Federal. It’s federal v. federal, and we oppose this creation.

STATUS: General Order – Senate

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