Ad Valorem Tax Dollars Eyed to Pay for Public Services - Are We About to Open Pandora's Box?Fri, 24 Mar 2017 16:26:51 CDT
With yet another week of Oklahoma’s legislative session under our belts, Oklahoma Farm Bureau’s vice president of public policy, John Collison, spoke with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays offering an update on actions at the state capital relevant to the state’s agricultural industry. Collison says there is one piece of legislation being peddled at the moment that he describes as “unbelievably bad” and asserts that it would cause unprecedented harm to rural Oklahomans.
“H.B. 1374 - allows cities and municipalities with just a simple majority, to go out and ask the people if they want to raise ad valorem taxes to start funding city services,” he explained. “Police salaries, fire salaries - that’s unprecedented!”
Collison emphasizes that ad valorem taxes are subject to a super majority for a reason, and that those funds are meant to pay for hard assets; not salaries. He acknowledges that times are tough at the moment in Oklahoma but a measure like this would “change everything.”
“This opens Pandora’s Box,” Collison exclaimed. “The teachers will be up there next year if they want to use ad valorem taxes for their salaries, and why wouldn’t they?”
Thus far, the bill in question “barely squeaked by” in the House says Collison and is now on its way to the Senate.
“We’re going over to the Senate,” Collison directed, “and we’re going to make sure it dies a painful death.”
Listen to Ron Hays and John Collison discuss the politics of last week at the state capital including HB 1374 among other issues and events coming up, by clicking or tapping the LISTEN BAR below.
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