Governor Scott Walker and Oklahoma’s Tax Cuts
News and Views from
June 2012 Newsletter
In This Issue…
* Update:Oklahoma’s Income Tax Reduction Battle: Disappointing!
* Congratulations Governor Scott Walker!
* Update: Firefighter, Police Pension Bills
*NormanEconomic Development Authority Trust
* RightOnline 2012
* AFP’s “Wasteful Spending” Ad
UPDATE: Oklahoma’s Income Tax Reduction Battle & Budget Agreement:
I’ve racked my brain looking for another word to describe what occurred this legislative session, and sadly, the only word that keeps coming to mind is “disappointing.” Governor Mary Fallin and leaders in the Oklahoma House and Senate came to a budget agreement, but for the most part, this budget looked an awful lot like last year’s budget, the budget before that, and the previous 8 year’s budget of Gov. Henry’s administration in terms of size and spending. Where were the tax cuts? The consolidations of inefficient agencies? Spending cuts? Disappointing.
Consider this: Every Republican in our state legislature ran on a “lower taxes and limited government” platform, but for the most part still managed to grow government spending and didn’t cut taxes. Disappointing. Now, there are several reasons for the results of this legislative session…and none of them are acceptable. Personality conflicts, lack of leadership, policy distractions, and political expediency are just a few that got in the way.
My recommendations for the 2013 Legislative Session:
- Focus! Focus on what’s good for ALL Oklahomans and do the right things for the right reasons.
- Cut income taxes for all Oklahomans, including small businesses. Entrepreneurs and small businesses are the engines behind a great economy, and a broader, fairer tax base works best and stimulates economies.
- Submit and vote on budget issues early in the session – not in the last week of session.
- Better yet, go to a 2-year budget cycle. This would allow more time to truly analyze agency spending and provide real reviews on spending policies implemented two years earlier. Currently, decisions are being made on past spending decisions that are barely implemented before new decisions are made.
- Being a Fiscal Conservative means cutting spending, eliminating waste, and not funding things that are not a government’s job to fund. Do we really want the state to fund a TV station when my TV already has 1000 stations? Or spend 2 million taxpayer dollars on horse racing? Winners and losers in the market place should be based off a product or service provided – and not the quality of your lobbyist.
Bottomline: “It’s the spending, stupid!” The government’s role is simple: Create an environment for businesses to grow and families to prosper. Government’s role should not include paying businesses to provide jobs or picking winners and losers in the marketplace by providing tax breaks to special interest groups. A business will hire when there is a reason to hire or profit to be made. If a bad product is produced, it is not the government’s job to keep them in business. However, we’re not naïve, and of course there are services that still need to be provided such as roads/bridges, safety and security measures and a short-term safety net for those who fall on hard times.
My advice: Focus on what matters most in this state: Passing measures that create an environment where businesses and families can prosper most, and stop wasting our hard-earned tax dollars on wasteful, inefficient, unproductive spending.
Congratulations Governor Scott Walker! He has shown that elected leaders can take on and defeat the most powerful special interest group in the nation, government unions, if their reforms are truly bold. Facing a $3.6 billion budget deficit, Walker tackled some of the most powerful government unions and saved over $1 billion for Wisconsin taxpayers. And the result? Property taxes have decreased for the first time in 12 years, unemployment is falling, and school districts are flush with cash.
Remember when they said the sky would fall? Thanks to Governor Walker’s reforms, it’s sunnier than ever…and leadership was the key! Now, onto to the rest of America!
Americans for Prosperity also released the following highlight video, which captures recent efforts in Wisconsin to educate citizens on the positive impact of Governor Walker’s budget reforms. Click below to watch!
UPDATE: Firefighter, Police Pension Bills
HB 2319 (the police pension bill) was signed into law by Gov. Fallin May 22nd. This bill works to ensure sustainable solvency of the police pension system, lessening the debt burden on taxpayers. A similar bill related to the firefighter pension system, HB 2320, took some twists and turns during session and ended up being gutted in favour of language dealing with the teachers’ retirement system. Hopefully legislators will bring back the firefighter pension bill next session in an effort to shore up the system’s financial fate.
Two weeks ago, three Norman city council members voted to bring to the floor a resolution to establish the Norman Economic Development Authority Trust, an all-encompassing agency that removes all economic development matters from the hands of the city council and puts them into the hands of seven trustees. There are many issues concerning the Trust: Accountability? Too broad of a mission? Debt and bonding authority, among others. Their mission statement is constantly changing, but two questions must be answered: Is this Trust good for the people of Norman? And, is the Trust necessary, considering that the City Council already has the authority that it’s delegating to the Trust? See continued discussion and read what this Trust advocates by clicking HERE.
Coming soon on June 15-16, Americans for Prosperity Foundation will host the fifth annual RightOnline Conference in Las Vegas,Nevada. Over the years, RightOnline has built a reputation as the premier conference for bloggers, social media gurus and online activists to network and learn new tactics.
RightOnline is once again the number one event for conservative bloggers and online activists. Top national speakers and leading experts will host tracks and break-out sessions featuring the latest in new media applications and strategy for 2012. General registration is already sold out for RightOnline 2012, however, a limited number of Friday-night only tickets are available for Sarah Palin’s appearance. Click here to register today!
Visit www.RightOnline.com for more information.
AFP’s “Wasteful Spending” ad holds President Obama accountable for sending billions of taxpayer dollars to “green energy” companies overseas, even while Americans suffer with rising energy prices and a lack of jobs. It played in 8 states and on FOX & MSNBC.
Every dollar AFP spends in Oklahoma, we raise in Oklahoma. AFP-Oklahoma counts on your generous support to make our many education efforts around the state a reality. Please consider making an investment! You can send your donation to:
1050 E. 2nd Street #106
Edmond, OK 73034
Stuart A. Jolly – State Director
P.S. – On the Web: Just in case you missed our latest two videos – you’ll love them!