One-On-One With Gov. Stitt: Why He Wants To Cut The Personal Income Tax

Governor Kevin Stitt’s goal with the upcoming special session is to give Oklahomans a pay raise. The governor is calling for a quarter of a percent cut, in the personal income tax.

Tuesday, January 23rd 2024, 4:44 pm

By: News 9


Lawmakers are headed back to the capitol next week to vote on cutting the state’s personal income tax. This is part of Governor Kevin Stitt’s special session call, ahead of the 2024 regular session.

Governor Kevin Stitt is asking for a quarter of a percent cut to the personal income tax.

This is the third special session that Governor Stitt has called on tax cuts since he took office, and he says he is hoping the third time’s the charm.

“Let's give Oklahomans a pay raise,” said Stitt. “It's that simple. I have the largest savings account the states ever had. I'm not gonna put Oklahoma in a bad situation, but let's keep this momentum as a business friendly state.”

The governor has been pushing for tax cuts since he took office, discussing eliminating the grocery tax, and altering the personal income tax. Stitt says eventually, he would like the state to completely eliminate the personal income tax, but he knows that’s not something that can be done overnight.

Stitt says he’s hopeful this quarter of a percent cut will put the state on a good path.

“My quarter of a point tax cut is $100 million for the state,” said Stitt.

That’s $100 million out of a $20 billion annual budget for the state of Oklahoma. It’s a price tag that Stitt says is worth it to put money back into Oklahoman's pockets.

“Then you just simply take your salary, your income, and multiply that by .25% and that's what your savings would be,” said Stitt.

Many lawmakers are saying they’ve been there, done that, after two special sessions came and went with no action. Some question why this special session will be any different than the last.

“Last time, I gave them a smorgasbord of options, I said ‘listen let's just cut taxes,’” said Stitt. “This year I just said ‘Okay, let's just be really specific. Lets just put it up for a vote,' that's all I’ve asked.”

A single day of special session costs taxpayers around $35,000. But Stitt says he wants this passed before the regular session so lawmakers can have a better idea of the budget going into the regular session, and focus on other issues.

“Giving things back to the taxpayer, holding government spending down,” said Stitt.

During the regular session, Governor Stitt says he’ll be focused on infrastructure, healthcare, education, and the economy. Of course, that’s if this tax cut is passed.

“We want to give Oklahomans a pay raise and that's why I'm such a proponent of getting it done,” said Stitt.

The House Speaker and Senate Pro Tem have both said they will be answering the governor's call for a special session. Lawmakers will gather at the capitol on Monday, Jan. 29 for a special session, and begin the regular session the following Monday, Feb. 5.


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