State Sen. Roger Thompson has scheduled an informational meeting to examine Oklahoma’s tax code at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, July 18, in room 535 of the state Capitol. Thompson said as chair of the Senate’s Appropriations Subcommittee on Finance, he wants to provide an opportunity to fellow senators to learn more about the state’s tax laws.
“It’s complicated, but it’s crucial to have a solid understanding of our tax code,” Thompson said. “I thought it would be beneficial to ask the experts to come and help us take a ‘deep dive’ into our tax code and the expenditure side as well.”
Thompson has invited Tony Mastin, Executive Director of the Oklahoma Tax Commission; Lynn Bajema, Comptroller from the Office of Management and Enterprise Services (OMES); Shelly Paulk, OMES Deputy Budget Director for Revenue; and Andrew Messer, Deputy Treasurer of Governmental Affairs with the State Treasurer’s office to make presentations and answer questions.
Beyond the July 18 meeting, Thompson hopes to continue the discussion on the taxes—he’s requested an interim study on tax reform.
“As we seek to stabilize and strengthen the budgeting process, we need to take a look at how current tax law is impacting our state and our citizens,” Thompson said. “There are several avenues to examine, ranging from a flat tax to broadening the base and lowering the rate. Our economy is changing, and we need to consider how best to respond to those changes so we can provide resources for education, public safety, health and mental health and other critical functions of government, but do so in a way that does not impede job creation and economic growth.”
In addition to chairing the Finance Subcommittee, Thompson also serves on the Fiscal Affairs and Government Operations Committee of the Southern Legislative Conference (SLC) of the Council of State Governments (CSG), as well as the National Conference of State Legislatures’ Task Force on State and Local Taxation. He also serves as the Senate’s representative on the Streamlined Multi-Sales and Use Tax Agreement Governing Board.
Sen. Thompson: (405) 521-5588