Poll: Most Oklahomans Unfamiliar With State Tax Credits

  • Joe Wertz

Most Oklahomans are unfamiliar with the hundreds of tax credits, exemptions, deductions and incentives on the state’s books, according to a poll commissioned by nonprofit investigative journalism outfit Oklahoma Watch.

The SoonerPoll.com survey, which polled 587 likely Oklahoma voters, showed that 61 percent weren’t familiar with the 480 tax incentives listed in the state’s tax code, almost double the 31 percent who said they were familiar with the credit programs.

Fifty-one percent of those polled agreed that some people, corporations, interest groups and associations should receive tax breaks, while 36 percent opposed all state tax incentives.

According to the poll, only 22 percent of respondents had a positive opinion of current tax breaks, while 34 percent had a negative opinion.

University of Oklahoma political scientist Keith Gaddie — also the vice president of research for SoonerPoll’s parent company, Shapard Research — told Oklahoma Watch that most Oklahomans file short tax forms and don’t claim as many deductions as those who benefit from tax credits.

“Most folks don’t get out there into the weeds with these complex exemptions,” Gaddie told Oklahoma Watch. “They never encounter them. They don’t know what they are.”