(The Center Square) – Oklahoma’s gross tax revenue in October was in double digits again, signifying continued economic growth.
“Recent income growth along with low unemployment shows that Oklahoma is moving in the right direction,” Curtis Shelton, policy researcher with the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs (OCPA), told The Center Square. Gov. Kevin Stitt along with Senate pro Tem Greg Treat and Speaker of the House Charles McCall have kept the state relatively open throughout the pandemic, positioning the state to capture all of that growth once the economy has started to recover. “
Gross tax revenue totaled $ 1.27 billion, a 16% increase over the same period last year.
State Treasurer Randy McDaniel attributes the growth to rising prices for oil and natural gas, according to The Tulsa World. For the third month in a row, revenue from oil and gas taxes exceeded $ 100 million.
Income taxes and sales taxes have also increased rapidly from year to year. These are the two largest sources of government revenue. Sales tax revenue was $ 529.1 million, a 15% increase from the same period last year. User taxes were $ 76.9 million, up more than 20%. Income taxes are up nearly 10% from the same period last year, totaling $ 414.4 million.
âThe data also shows that Oklahoma could benefit from continued growth-friendly tax reform,â Shelton said. “The elimination of the Oklahoma labor penalty would help Oklahoma compete with states like Texas, Tennessee and Florida which have no income tax and subsequently suffered billion in economic growth over the past decade. “
Tax reform continues to be a hot topic, as various proposed bills can have a significant impact on state revenue sources.
“Oklahoma must find a way to stabilize its revenue base as the federal government continues to push for a climate agenda that would further unstable Oklahoma’s already volatile dependence on oil and gas revenues Shelton said. âShifting to a consumption-based tax model with more reliance on sales tax and less income tax would continue to move the state forward in the right direction. “