Oklahoma House passes tax bill, teacher raise
by Dale Denwalt, NewsOK.com
For the first time since Oklahoma’s political leaders began pushing for more revenue last year, the House of Representatives mustered enough votes to raise several taxes, including raising the rate charged on the production of oil and gas to 5 percent.
The bill’s revenue of an estimated $447 million would pay for a salary hike for teachers, school support personnel and state employees. Thousands of Oklahoma teachers are planning to walk out of the classroom next week if their demands for higher pay and more education funding aren’t met.
Despite an average pay raise of more than $6,000 that was also approved Monday, the Oklahoma Education Association said the teacher strike would go as planned.
“April 2 is still on. Our ask is still our ask,” the group tweeted Monday. “The House is considering a number of bills tonight that could be a step in the right direction. We’re still asking for a complete package, including funding for years 2 and 3.”