Friday, February 9, 2018
The second regular session of the 56th Oklahoma Legislature convened on Monday and we are off to a running start, due in large part to the continued second special session that is running concurrently with the regular session.
If you have questions about any of the information provided below, please contact our office, or you may contact Skye McNiel, 918-645-1289 or by email at smcniel@okacte.org or Hayley Jones at (405) 524-1191. 
Following the announcement of the   Step Up Oklahoma  plan by a group of Oklahoma business and community leaders, Governor Fallin amended her previous  call of the second special session  to mirror many of the revenue and reform items proposed by the Step Up plan, including a $5,000 teacher and principal pay raise.

There was a lot of special session activity this week related to the Step Up plan, with a House floor vote on the revenue and teacher pay raise bill expected Monday, February 12th . A few key updates:

a.      A $5,000 teacher pay raise bill ( HB1030xx ) and the revenue bill to fund it ( HB1033xx ) both passed the House and Senate budget committees yesterday. The pay raise bill  passed unanimously  in the House, although there were a few excused votes. It also passed unanimously in the Senate. The revenue bill  passed 21-5  in the House with a few excused votes. It passed 12-2 in the Senate (vote not available). The revenue bill will require a 75 percent supermajority for approval.  Click here  to see the House teacher pay raise vote details and  here  to the see House revenue bill vote details.
b.      There was a significant change in HB1037xx , the income tax reform plan, and it was replaced with a committee substitute. Several other bills in the Step Up Oklahoma proposals also passed. Below is a list of this week's Step Up special session bill action:
  • HB 1027xx  by Rep. Jon Echols and Sen. Greg Treat was approved in the House Rules committee
  • Grants the governor the authority to appoint the chief executives of the Department of Agriculture, Office of Juvenile Affairs, Department of Mental Health and Substances Abuse Services, Department of Corrections, Department of Health, Oklahoma Health Care Authority and the Department of Tourism. It makes the board for each of these agencies an advisory body.
  • HB 1028xx by Rep. Jon Echols and Sen. Greg Treat was approved in the House Rules committee. 
  • Grants the governor the authority to set salaries for agency heads. 
  • HB 1029xx by Rep. Jon Echols was approved in the House Rules committee. 
  • Creates the 15-person Office of Accountability within the Legislative Service Bureau to examine agency budgets and investigate potential fraud, waste and abuse. The agency will report to the Speaker of the House and Senate President Pro Tempore.
  • HB 1030xx (committee sub) by Rep. Kevin Wallace and Sen. Kim David passed House and Senate JCABs.
  • Provides a $5,000 teacher pay raise beginning with the 2018-2019 school year. It would establish a new minimum salary schedule for certified personnel, which increases all salary steps and levels by $5,000 above the current schedule. It guarantees that any person employed as certified personnel (except the superintendent) this school year who is paid above the minimum salary level will still receive a salary increase of $5,000. The current salary schedule is repealed. Implementation of the new salary schedule is contingent upon passage of HB1033x to pay for the increase also passing the Legislature.
  • HB 1031xx by Rep. Kevin Wallace and Sen. Kim David passed House and Senate JCABs.
  • This gaming modernization bill would allow the state and tribes to enter into a supplemental compact for additional forms of non-house-banked table games (wheel, ball or dice games). The additional revenue will be deposited in the General Revenue Fund and the Education Reform Revolving Fund and is expected to generate about $22 million for FY19.
  • HB 1032xx by Rep. Kevin Wallace and Sen. Kim David passed House and Senate JCABs.
  • This bill would change the source of revenue for the Rebuilding Oklahoma Access and Driver Safety (ROADS) Fund. Instead of all of funding coming off the top from the General Revenue Fund, now the new motor fuel tax revenue and a certain portion of vehicle license revenue will be apportioned to the ROADS fund. The bill does not change the current apportionment of the vehicle license revenue. Beginning July 1, 2019, certain excess revenue, after the apportionments are made, will now go to the ROADS fund instead of the General Revenue fund. It also modifies the destination of other revenue from the State Transportation Fund to the Highway Construction and Maintenance Fund. The fiscal impact statement is available here.
  • HB 1033xx (committee sub) by Rep. Kevin Wallace and Sen. Kim David passed House and Senate JCABs.
  • This bill deals with taxes on cigarettes, wind generation, gross production and fuel. It includes the cigarette and smokeless tobacco tax levy. Taxes little cigars as cigarettes. Creates a gasoline and diesel fuel tax levy of $0.06 per gallon. Modifies the gross production tax rate to 4% for a period of 36 months then the rate goes to 7%. Also modifies the incremental production incentives. Includes a $1.00 per megawatt tax on commercial wind turbines which are a zero-emission facility. Requires 75 percent supermajority.
  • HB 1034xx by Rep. Kevin Wallace and Sen. Kim David passed House and Senate JCABs.
  •  Caps transferability/cash refundability of coal tax credits at $5 million annually. See the fiscal impact statement here.
  •  HB 1035xx by Rep. Kevin Wallace and Sen. Kim David passed House and Senate JCABs.
  •  Caps transferability/cash refundability of wind tax credits at $18 million annually. See the fiscal impact statement here.
  • HB 1036xx by Rep. Kevin Wallace and Sen. Kim David passed House and Senate JCABs.
  • Caps transferability/cash refundability of railroad tax credits at $2 million annually. See the fiscal impact statement here.
  • HB 1037xx (committee sub) by Rep. Kevin Wallace and Sen. Roger Thompson passed House JCAB.
  • This bill would restore the refundable features of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and modifies the Oklahoma standard deduction. See the fiscal impact statement here.
Regular Session Bills of Note

I.     SB 1370 by Sen. Jason Smalley (R-Stroud)
SB 1370 changes reference of work ready curriculum to career ready curriculum. It adds successful completion of one year of a full-time, three-hour career and technology program or any other mathematics course with content and/or rigor equal to or above Algebra I to the courses to meet the mathematics requirement for high school graduation. It adds successful completion of one year of a full-time, three-hour career and technology program to the courses to meet the science requirement for high school graduation.

II.       HB 3054 by Rep. Kyle Hilbert (R-Depew)
HB 3054 exempts the State Department of Education, the State Board of Education and the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education from consolidation relating to the Oklahoma Information Services Act.

III.        HB 3220 by Rep. Jadine Nollan (R-Sand Springs)
HB 3220 authorizes the State Board of Career and Technology Education to develop a certification system for teachers and instructors who teach in technology center school districts. It requires such a system to be competency-based, and requires the Board to promulgate rules.