Oklahoma Senate Appropriations Chair Chuck Hall, R-Perry, said he didn’t support an income tax cut this year because he believes the state’s finances have been artificially inflated by billions of dollars in federal pandemic aid. 

“I don’t believe that Oklahoma knows exactly where we’re at — I believe we are so artificially propped up, that we really truly don’t know,” Hall said. 

Gov. Kevin Stitt made an unsuccessful push this year to cut the state’s top income tax rate from 4.74% to 4.5%. While Oklahoma has $4 billion dollars in reserves to weather bad economic times, Hall said he was unwilling to support a permanent tax cut that would be nearly impossible to later reverse. It takes a two-thirds majority vote to pass a tax increase in the Legislature. 

Hall shared his insider’s view of this year’s budget negotiations Tuesday night during The Frontier’s Talk Back Tour event at Cabin Boys Brewery in Tulsa. Lawmakers including Hall; Rep. Regina Goodwin, D-Tulsa; Sen. Todd Gollihare, R-Tulsa and Sen. Jo Anna Dossett, D-Tulsa answered questions from Frontier readers and staff about education, the budget and other state policy issues.

The Frontier is hosting another free Talk Back Tour event at Capitol View Events Center in Oklahoma City, 5201 N. Lincoln, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on June 11. The event will include complimentary drinks and pizza for attendees. RSVP here. 

Senate Pro Tempore Greg Treat, R-Oklahoma City; Senate Majority Leader Kay Floyd, D-Oklahoma City; Sen. Kristen Thompson, R-Edmond; Sen. Adam Pugh, R-Edmond and Rep. Jason Lowe, D-Oklahoma City will field questions at the Oklahoma City event. 

Text the word “Frontier” to (918) 393-7284 to get updates from our staff and submit questions for the lawmakers to answer. 

The Oklahoma City event is sponsored by Empire Slice House, Clubby Seltzers and Citizens Bank of Edmond.