Governor Brad Henry set agenda on tax cuts

Monday, February 14th 2005, 5:27 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Democratic Gov. Brad Henry has set the agenda on tax cuts, while a Republican-sponsored plan that mimics a contentious Colorado tax and spending law appears to be in trouble.

Henry's $163-million tax-cut program, which features income tax rebates of up to a hundred dollars this year, has been embraced in principle by House Speaker Todd Hiett and other GOP leaders.

The governor announced it before the 2005 legislative session began last week. The plan cuts taxes in four other areas and also calls for investing $100-million in high tech research.

Heading into the session, the Republican legislative leadership had not produced its tax program, choosing instead to concentrate on promoting workers' compensation reform and lawsuit reform as their top goals.

Hiett says he accepts Henry's tax-cut figure as a good faith effort and plans move the bill quickly through the House, while not ruling out changes in the measure.

Henry's plan would also reduce estate taxes, income taxes of retirees, capital gains taxes of businesses and sales taxes on back-to-school purchases.

The plan would be funded by excess revenue in years when the state's rainy day fund is full.