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Economic Freedom
Free Market Friday: Lessons from Connecticut

June 9, 2017 - 8:24am CDT

Oklahoma is in a recession compared to 2014, after more than 21,800 energy and manufacturing jobs have been cut, when Oklahomans have lost more than $13 billion in taxable income and reduced their purchases subject to sales and use tax by $4.1 billion just to survive. Throughout the entire 2017 leg... READ MORE

Blue State Blues

June 6, 2017 - 8:50am CDT

Oklahoma liberals want higher taxes. House Minority Leader Scott Inman says his caucus hasn’t just been asking for tax increases, “We’ve been screaming it.” The liberal argument is simple: More revenue should make it easier to craft a state budget, right? Connecticut offers a cautionary tale. Acco... READ MORE

Free Market Friday: Getting real about government spending

June 2, 2017 - 1:15pm CDT

From the first day of the 2017 legislative session until its closing moments, most lobbyists and many politicians told us our state has a structural deficit leaving it in dire need of new recurring revenue, which is to say, major tax increases. As Oklahoma’s own Paul Harvey used to say, here is the... READ MORE

Free Market Friday: The veiled budget

May 19, 2017 - 9:14am CDT

To hear some at the state Capitol talk, every agency is on starvation rations due to the state budget shortfall. The executive branch made presentations offering a doom-and-gloom picture of government agencies implying that if funding remains flat for the largest seven agencies then the other 60 age... READ MORE

Oklahoma State Budget Crisis? I Should Say So

May 19, 2017 - 8:45am CDT

By J. Scott Moody and Wendy P. Warcholik When it comes to government spending in Oklahoma, the 800-pound gorilla in the room that everyone ignores is this simple question: Should government grow faster than the private sector’s ability to pay? To answer that question, a little history needs to be ... READ MORE

OCPA Offers Balanced Budget Plan with a Teacher Pay Raise

May 16, 2017 - 11:57am CDT

With just over a week until the end of the regular legislative session, some lawmakers have proposed massive tax increases, including a plan to cap personal itemized deductions that would dramatically increase personal income taxes on many Oklahoma families and small businesses. OCPA released today... READ MORE

Three Cheers for 'Cost Avoidance'

May 15, 2017 - 3:15pm CDT

By Jonathan Small Most Oklahomans know there are really only two ways to deal with the state’s budget shortfall. We can either trim expenses—especially those that can be reduced by some real reforms—or raise taxes. Of course, every time our state raised taxes in the past, that only delayed confron... READ MORE

The Bogus Budget: Career Tech

May 15, 2017 - 2:52pm CDT

Oklahoma spends over half a billion dollars every year through the State Department of Career and Technology Education, or Career Tech. As with many state agencies, appropriations by the legislature make up just a small share of this expenditure. As shown on the chart below, for every one dollar app... READ MORE

How to read a state budget bill

May 12, 2017 - 9:48am CDT

As the legislature nears the end of session and the passage of a new budget, it is a good time to think about what that bill will look like and how to understand it. The bill can appear overwhelming at first, with seemingly endless numbers, but there are a few key areas to focus in on. This post is ... READ MORE

Free Market Friday: Capping vital deductions is bad policy

May 12, 2017 - 8:36am CDT

Some lawmakers searching for more revenue are trying to increase personal income taxes on Oklahoma families and small business owners – all while common sense ways to control spending are stymied by bureaucrats, special interests, and tax consumers. The latest tax raising idea proposed at the State... READ MORE

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