Thursday, February 15, 2024

Pro Tem Treat calls for grocery sales tax cut; Gov. Stitt, Speaker McCall respond

Gov. Kevin Stitt has been asking the Oklahoma Legislature for several years to eliminate the grocery sales tax and cut income taxes, including calling special sessions to that end. Yesterday, Senate Pro Tem Greg Treat sent out a press release citing a new economic report as evidence for passage of his bill to do away with the grocery sales tax - which he says will be more impactful for Oklahoma than Stitt's income tax idea.

Gov. Stitt and House Speaker Charles McCall responded with press releases of their own. Read on:

With New Inflation Report, Pro Tem Treat Doubles Down on Grocery Tax Cut

OKLAHOMA CITY (Feb. 14th) – Senate Pro Tem Greg Treat, R-Oklahoma City, highlighted the January report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released today showing food prices rose nearly 4% over the last year.

Pro Tem Treat’s Senate Bill 1283 aims to eliminate the state portion of the grocery sales tax. According to estimates, eliminating the grocery tax would save average Oklahomans 5.5 times more money than a 0.25% income tax cut

“This new report further highlights Oklahomans need help feeding their families,” Pro Tem Treat said. “With the average Oklahoman spending nearly $300 per trip to the grocery store and prices continuing to rise, we need to do what we can to help Oklahomans now. Cutting the state portion of the grocery tax makes sense and will provide relief to all Oklahomans. The governor has already publicly committed to signing a grocery tax cut bill. I am hoping my colleagues will come together on this plan and we can pass it, get it signed and get Oklahomans immediate relief every time they buy groceries for their families.”

The pro tem’s Senate Bill 1283 is currently in the Senate Rules Committee. No date to hear the bill has been set.  


OKLAHOMA CITY (February 14, 2024) - Today, Governor Kevin Stitt issued the following statement supporting efforts to give Oklahomans grocery tax relief:

"I applaud Pro Tem Treat for working to give Oklahomans relief on grocery taxes. The Senate has the grocery bill sitting in their chamber and can be voted on today to provide immediate inflation relief. They also have a tax cut available that would put more money in the pockets of Oklahomans this year.

"As I said in my State of the State, I will sign any tax cut that comes to my desk. I stand by that promise and I will sign it immediately."

Speaker McCall: Inflation relief for Oklahomans available immediately

OKLAHOMA CITY (Feb. 14th) – Speaker Charles McCall, R-Atoka, today issued a statement regarding tax relief for Oklahomans in response to President Pro Tempore Greg Treat’s latest press release on grocery tax cuts. 

"I am encouraged by Pro Temp. Treat's latest press release, and instant relief is available to Oklahomans as soon as the Senate takes action on legislation already available in their chamber," McCall said. "The House has passed two measures, HB1955, the grocery tax cut which has an emergency in place, and HB1002XXX, the income tax cut, that, once voted on by the Senate, would immediately go to the Governor for signature and could provide immediate relief to Oklahomans by eliminating the state portion of the grocery tax and lowering the state's income tax by .25%."

McCall said that both bills are available to be heard by the Senate immediately. 

"The House has explored, and passed, legislation of every kind to provide relief to hardworking Oklahomans. I urge the Senate to do the same by putting these measures up for a vote so we can get Oklahomans the inflation relief they desperately need." 


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