Environment, Education, Energy: Policy to People

Tax Credit Conflict Illustrates Disconnect Among Many Oklahomans

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Rep. David Dank, R-Oklahoma City, closes out the final tax credit task force meeting in 2011.

Oklahoma’s tax policy debate continues again this year. And, once again, state Rep. David Dank, R-Oklahoma City, is leading a task force charged with examining tax credits and economic incentives.

Last year, Dank’s Tax Credit Task Force recommended reining in the tax credits with constitutional amendments, increased auditing and performance measures, and the outright elimination of transferable tax credits, a source of much committee consternation.

Almost all of those ideas died at the hands of special interest groups. The crux of the conflict, as the Journal Record‘s M. Scott Carter sees it:

Oklahomans still have a huge disconnect between the amount of taxes they are willing to pay and the services they expect from their government.

Most Oklahomans want smaller government and less taxes, “yet in the same breath, these people will also tell you how they need better roads and schools and how there aren’t enough police or firemen working,” Carter observes.

Discussion: If Oklahoma’s state government is overgrown, where would you start pruning? Be candid. Name names.

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