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Economic Freedom
How Does Oklahoma State Spending Compare?

October 4, 2017 - 9:09am CDT

With special session underway, it is important not to miss the forest for the trees. What is the truth about state government spending? I noted recently that Oklahoma government spending has reached an all-time high. No matter how much talk there is about funds being slashed or depleted, total spen... READ MORE

Cost Avoidance #7,9: Use Cash On Hand

October 3, 2017 - 1:48pm CDT

#7, 9) Use Cash On Hand: Spend unbudgeted revenues and excess funds in the CIRB account before considering tax hikes Some politicians tell us they want higher taxes on cigarettes so that fewer people smoke, and higher taxes on businesses and earnings because tax rates don’t matter. Of course, when... READ MORE

Cost Avoidance #8: Make Low-Priority Agencies Non-Appropriated

October 2, 2017 - 3:22pm CDT

#8) Make Low-Priority Agencies Non-Appropriated: TV shows, space travel, and old guns are not core services If hopes, dreams, and good intentions are the only limits we place on government, then there will never be enough money and politicians will never have enough power. The American way of... READ MORE

Cost Avoidance #5: End Subsidies for Hollywood

September 29, 2017 - 11:09am CDT

#5) End Subsidies for Hollywood: All Oklahomans deserve tax relief, not just those working for movie studios Are people who make movies better people? And what about companies that film television shows, are they morally superior to your local barber shop, pet store, or family farm? Sure, economic... READ MORE

Cost Avoidance #2-4: Cut Cronyism for Wind Companies

September 28, 2017 - 1:35pm CDT

#2, 3, 4) Cut Cronyism for Wind Companies: Cap payouts and repeal their sales tax exemption Capping annual payouts of the Zero-Emission Tax Credit and the ad valorem reimbursement for wind energy companies at $12.5 million each, and repealing the sales tax exemption for wind turbines, could save m... READ MORE

Conservative Leaders Urge Oklahoma Politicians to Protect Taxpayers

September 28, 2017 - 12:26pm CDT

September 28, 2017 Dear Governor and State Lawmakers, We are a coalition of conservative citizens, many of us serving in leadership of state or local organizations, who write to urge you to address the need for more consolidation and other efficiencies in all areas of state government and ... READ MORE

TSET: Don’t Smoke, Get Drunk!

September 27, 2017 - 1:25pm CDT

Why does a state agency award grants for “alcohol use prevention” while promoting bars and nightclubs? As OCPA’s Center for Investigative Journalism reported this morning, Oklahoma’s Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) does this through a program it created and funds called Free The Night. ... READ MORE

State Spending Growth Vs. Population Growth and Rate of Inflation

September 27, 2017 - 10:06am CDT

Oklahoma state government spending is at an all-time high. That is a simple fact, but it’s reasonable to ask how growth compares to changes in population or the economy. Let’s take a look. It is true that since 2000 Oklahoma’s population has increased 14%. But in that same interval, government sp... READ MORE

Economic Effects on Oklahoma Tax Revenues

September 27, 2017 - 10:04am CDT

During this year’s regular legislative session, the storyline was that state government was in dire need of revenue to support itself and those it serves. Much of the data shows that while revenues were indeed down, this was due to a weak economy and not an insufficient tax burden on taxpayers. Okla... READ MORE

Cost Avoidance #6: End Payouts for Tribal Tobacco Sales

September 27, 2017 - 9:57am CDT

#6) End Payouts for Tribal Tobacco Sales Did you know that some Oklahoma cigarette tax dollars actually go to subsidize the sale of cigarettes? Sound crazy? Here’s how it happens. Oklahoma has agreements with tribal governments about cigarette sales. Under these “tobacco compacts,” stores on ... READ MORE

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