House Speaker Charles McCall says he will guarantee House Democrats a vote on raising the gross production tax if they help pass the GOP revenue package. He released the following statement:
House Speaker Charles McCall today has offered to hold a floor vote to raise the Gross Production Tax rate on new wells from 2 percent to 5 percent for the first 36 months if House Democrats will pass House Bill 1035 scheduled for a floor vote tomorrow, Wednesday, October 25.
House Minority Leader Scott Inman and various members of the Democratic Caucus have said on numerous occasions they believe there are enough votes in the Republican Caucus to raise the GPT rate if the Speaker would allow it to be voted on. McCall guarantees Democrats will have that opportunity if they will pass the revenue package announced yesterday, which contains numerous other items the Democratic Caucus has publicly supported including a teacher pay raise of $3,000 and a state employee pay raise of $1,000 and restoring the Earned Income Tax Credit.
“House Republicans are willing to compromise to get this budget solved for the people of Oklahoma,” said Speaker McCall, R-Atoka. “House Democrats have demanded a vote on increasing the GPT to five percent, so here is their chance. All they have to do is pass the revenue package of items they repeatedly said they want – healthcare funding, a teacher pay raise, a state employee pay raise and restoring the Earned Income Tax Credit for low income Oklahomans. If they will pass this package, I will guarantee them a straight up vote on GPT at 5 percent on the House floor. House Republicans will be allowed to vote their conscience on the GPT bill.”