Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Gov. Fallin comments on failure of tax-increase bill in House



Governor Mary Fallin Statement on the Failure of Bipartisan Budget Bill in House of Representatives

OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin this evening released this statement after House Bill 1054X, a bipartisan budget bill, failed to win the required three-fourths passage in the Oklahoma House of Representatives to advance to the Senate:

“I’m extremely disappointed by the House of Representatives failing to pass House Bill 1054X, which would have addressed a $215 million shortfall in our current fiscal year budget and provided a teacher pay raise.  It is discouraging that some members have chosen politics over taking care of people by refusing to vote for this budget package and have shown they are not willing to move our state forward. As a result of their no votes, our state will not have enough funds for agencies to deliver services that work for people, especially with our state facing a $400 million shortfall next session. I appreciate Speaker Charles McCall for allowing members to vote. Representatives, both Republicans and Democrats, who stood tall and voted for this measure should be commended.

“As a result, worst-case scenarios could become reality for several agencies that are being forced to cut crucial services if the pending revote fails. It will be devastating for many who depend on these services. This budget package would have helped set us on a path to long-term sustainability and stability by making more recurring revenue available, helped us to stop balancing our budget irresponsibly with one-time funds, and provided a teacher pay raise as well as a raise for state employees, and tax relief for low-income Oklahomans.

“The House leadership captured the bill, which with 71 votes was within a razor-thin margin of passing. The speaker should put it back up for a vote, and I call upon Oklahomans to continue to contact their representative.

“We can’t set Oklahoma up for failure by not facing our budget problems and kicking the can down the road. We must restore hope, and set future generations of Oklahomans up for success.”

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