Teachers Want Legislators To Tackle More Revenue Raising Measures
OKLAHOMA CITY - Teachers say they want more funding after the passage of a pair of bills on Friday.
It took a lot for state senators to pass the Amazon tax bill and ball and dice games, but teachers want them to tackle two other big revenue bills this week.
The first, they want Gov. Mary Fallin to restore the $5 hotel-motel tax that was removed from a funding package last week. It was taken out after members of both the hospital and hotel lobby flocked to Legislative offices asking for it to be taken out of the teacher pay raise deal. It's unclear what her thoughts are about the bill as Fallin was in Washington, D.C., on Friday when the bill passed.
The other bill is SB 1086, which would close a loophole for capital gains and it mostly affects Oklahoma's wealthiest. It's been something teachers have been asking for from the start of the walkout. If passed, it could net somewhere between $100 million and $120 million for education.
But there's a problem, Republicans in the House say they will not hear it on the floor. Floor leader John Echols was forced to strike a deal with members of his own party not to bring up the bill on capital gains in exchange for votes that gave teachers that $6,100 pay raise.
It's unlikely Republican leaders would go back on their word, especially on a bill that mostly impacts high dollar donors, but depending on how much pressure they'll feel from teachers, it could all change this week.