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Time Ticks Down As Budget Debate Heats Up

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OKLAHOMA CITY -

The battle over the budget is now in the home stretch. Gov. Mary Fallin said lawmakers have just ten days fix the budget, but critics say there’s more time.

We are now entering the final three weeks of the 2017 session. But state law only allows lawmakers two more weeks to pass any revenue raising measures. Gov. Fallin wants to do so by taxing services that aren’t currently taxed, and also increase taxes on tobacco and fuel.

Fallin's plan is said to generate about $840 million to help close an $878 million budget hole. But in response to Fallin’s “ten-day” countdown, prominent anti-tax lobbyist Dave Bond said, “Any state lawmaker who's saying there's less than two weeks left to address the budget is showing that their priority is raising taxes, not funding core services.”

Fallin said she will veto any budget that does not raise revenue. Democrats say they want to raise revenue by raising the gross production tax instead of taxing consumer services.

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