02.17.12

State Capitol Activity Recap

Second week of legislative session comes to an end
Just two weeks into the 2012 legislative session, many bills are beginning to make their way through the initial committee process. The next two weeks will be busy, as the Senate faces a series of deadlines: double-assigned bills (those that are referred to more than one Senate committee) must pass from the first committee by Monday, Feb. 20; and single-assigned bills (those referred to only one Senate committee) must pass committee by Feb. 27.

Many of this session’s larger bills on tax reform and tax credits will be heard in committee next week. On Monday at 4:30 p.m., the House Appropriations & Budget Subcommittee on Revenue and Taxation will hear several bills that emerged from the Task Force on Tax Credits and Economic Incentives and address eliminating many tax credits and setting principles for future use. See the “Business Retention & Expansion” section below for a detailed list of these bills.

On Tuesday at 10:30 a.m., the Senate’s Finance Committee will also hear many bills that emerged from the Task Force on Comprehensive Tax Reform. See the “Development, Economy & Taxes” section for a detailed list of this legislation.




State Legislation

BUSINESS RETENTION AND EXPANSION
Tax Credits and Economic Incentives
Tulsa Metro Chamber Priority; Tulsa/OKC Chambers Joint Agenda
Protect necessary and beneficial tax incentives and eliminate ineffective incentives through a process of annual review.

HB 2345, McNiel: Creates the Venture Capital Formation Tax Incentive Modification Act of 2012. Referred to House Appropriations and Budget Committee.
HB 2947, Derby: Modifies income tax rates; eliminates income tax deductions and exemptions; repeals sections of law related to income tax. Referred to House Rules Committee.
HB 2976, Dank: Disallows certain tax credits as of July 1, 2014 unless otherwise enacted by the State Legislature. Meeting set for Feb. 20 at 4:30 p.m., in House A&B Subcommittee on Revenue and Taxation.
HB 2977, Dank: Recreates the Task Force for the Study of State Tax Credits and Economic Incentives; allows for video-conferencing of members. Voted “Do Pass” from the House Rules Committee; headed to House floor.
HB 2978, Dank: Requires tax credits to identify recipients, create jobs, and limits number of credits allowed to be claimed by one entity. Meeting set for Feb. 20 at 4:30 p.m., in House A&B Subcommittee on Revenue & Taxation.
HB 2979, Dank: Eliminates zero emission facilities, manufacturers of small wind turbines, historic rehabilitation, energy-efficient residence and railroad reconstruction tax credits; eliminates tax credit transferability. Referred to House Appropriations and Budget Committee.
HB 2980, Dank: Establishes the "Saving Quality Jobs Technical Amendments Act of 2012." Referred to House Appropriations and Budget Committee.
HB 3061, Steele: Creates the Oklahoma Tax Reform Act of 2012. Referred to House Rules Committee.
HB 3069, Dorman: Adds remanufacturing to the Oklahoma Quality Jobs Program Act; makes modifications to sales tax transactions. Meeting set for Feb. 20 at 4:30 p.m., in House A&B Subcommittee on Revenue and Taxation.
HJR 1089, Steele: Sends to a vote of the people a measure that would prohibit the sale of tax credits, allows a person to find the identity of one that claimed a tax credit, and limits tax credits based on the amount one taxpayer could claim. Voted “Do Pass” from House Rules Committee; headed to House floor.
SB 1091, Aldridge: Updates a certain title of legislation to be named the "Oklahoma Sunset Law.” Referred to Senate Rules Committee.
SB 1190, Mazzei: Modifies the definition of "qualified employee" under the aerospace sector income tax credit; allows qualified employees to file amended Oklahoma income tax returns to claim the credit; provides special circumstances. Laid over in Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1216, Newberry: Sets the effective date for the ad valorem tax exemption for manufacturers as Jan. 1, 2012. Referred to Senate Rules Committee.
SB 1217, Adelson: Changes tax credit requirement for employees whose paid wages of at least $7,000 to who have averaged full-time-equivalent of employment of 30 or more hours a week. Referred to Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1234, Mazzei: Limits refunds relating to oil and gas exploration paid to all claimants annually to $50 million. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1235, Mazzei: Modifies definitions and provides dismissal from OK Quality Jobs Program Act if second payment claim is not filed within two years of the most recent claim. Voted “Do Pass” from Senate Finance Committee; headed to the Senate floor. 
SB 1447, Mazzei: Eliminates sales tax exclusions for several items such as newspapers, certain organizations and tickets to a variety of events. Referred to Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1464, Bingman: Adds definitions of certain areas to the Oklahoma Quality Jobs Program. Voted “Do Pass” from Senate Finance Committee; headed to the Senate floor.
SB 1477, Mazzei: Amends all dates to before January 1 or 2, 2013 relating to tax credits in Oklahoma Statute 68. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1492, Paddack: Creates tax credits for graduates after Jan. 1, 2013 who remain in the state based on type of degree attained. Referred to Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1516, Newberry: Changes the name of this title to "Oklahoma Quality Jobs Program Act.” Referred to Senate Rules Committee.
SB 1584, Marlatt: Sets the effective date for the ad valorem tax exemption for manufacturers as Jan. 1, 2012. Referred to Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1623, Mazzei: Phases out certain state income tax credits, exemptions, deductions, dividend exclusions and rebates by tax year 2014; modifies computation of state taxable income; removes obsolete language. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1677, Schulz: A new law creating a tax credit for establishing a corporate headquarters; sets criteria and limitations and defines terms. Referred to Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1715, Mazzei: Limits tax credits to insurers to $10 million per fiscal year; allows for proportional sharing in years where it exceeds $10 million. Voted “Do Pass” from Senate Finance Committee; headed to Senate floor.

DEVELOPMENT, ECONOMY & TAXES
Tax Reform
Tulsa Metro Chamber Priority; Joint Tulsa/OKC Chambers Agenda
Maintain Oklahoma’s friendly tax environment for businesses and economic development.

Personal Income Tax:
HB 2261, Shannon: Creates the "Oklahoma Revenue and Taxation Act." Referred to House Appropriations and Budget Committee.
HB 3038, Osborn: Updates dates, rates and specifications for the Oklahoma Income Tax Code. Voted “Do Pass” from House A&B Subcommittee on Revenue and Taxation; headed to the House floor.
SB 1435, Mazzei: Modifies income tax rates and brackets; clarifies language as it relates to taxation. Referred to Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1437, Mazzei: Modifies income tax rates and brackets; removes obsolete language. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1571, Jolley: Modifies income tax rates as of Jan. 1, 2012; Limits ability to claim credits, deductions, exemptions or exclusions. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1623, Mazzei: Phases out certain state income tax credits, exemptions, deductions, dividend exclusions and rebates by tax year 2014; modifies computation of state taxable income; removes obsolete language. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.

Corporate Income Tax:

• SB 1478, Mazzei: Lowers the corporate income tax percentage to 5 percent for all taxable years after Jan. 1, 2013. Referred to Senate Finance Committee.
SB 1562, Mazzei: Defines how consolidated corporations or groups shall determine their taxable income. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.

Franchise Tax:
SB 1436, Mazzei: Repeals sections of law related to franchise tax. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.

Intangible Property Tax:
SJR 52, Mazzei: Sends to a vote of the people a measure exempting personal property from the ad valorem tax or any other tax in lieu of ad valorem. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.

Quick Action Closing Fund
OneVoice Priority; Joint Tulsa/OKC Chambers Agenda
Fund the Oklahoma Quick Action Closing Fund.

HB 2346, McNiel: Creates the Oklahoma Quick Action Closing Fund Amendments Act of 2012. Voted “Do Pass” from the House Economic Development, Tourism and Financial Services Committee; headed to House floor.

Municipal Issues
OneVoice Priority
Support legislative action to preserve, expand and diversify sources of revenue available to municipalities.

• HB 2586, Ownbey: Modifies definitions of a place of business in reference to maintaining and in this state; redefines vendors; deletes amount a business must be involved in the state. Voted “Do Pass” from House A&B Subcommitte on Revenue and Taxation; headed to full House Appropriations & Budget Committee.
SB 1561, Brinkley: Defines what a retailer is for purposes of taxation; requires agreement between vendors and state to be approved by legislature; requires vendors to register with department. Voted “Do Pass” from Senate Finance Committee; headed to Senate floor.

EDUCATION
Education Funding Reductions
OneVoice Priority
Oppose any diversion of education revenue sources such as property tax caps and tax exemptions and further reductions in the income tax.
•  HB 2199, Trebilcock: Raises the household gross income from $20,000 to $30,000 for additional $1,000 exemption. Meeting set for Feb. 20 at 4:30 p.m., in House A&B Subcommittee on Revenue and Taxation.
•  SB 1036, Stanislawski: Increases the amount of the homestead exemption to $22,000 or 50 percent of the amount set by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development to be the median income for the county or metro area. Voted “Do Pass” from Senate Finance Committee; headed to Senate floor.

Higher Education Enrollment and Graduation
Tulsa Metro Chamber Priority; Joint Tulsa/OKC Chambers Legislative Agenda
•  HB 2492, Cannaday: Allows for the completion of a course or program at a technology center for college credit to fulfill a high school curriculum credit for graduation. Laid over in House Common Education Committee.

Online Education
Tulsa Metro Chamber Priority; Joint Tulsa/OKC Chambers Legislative Agenda
•  HB 2532, Cannaday: Restrictions set for school districts entering a contract with an online course provider unless its principal location is in Oklahoma, or at least 50 percent of the provider's employees and assets are in Oklahoma. Referred to House Common Education Committee.
•  SB 1409, Ford: Creates the Virtual Education Authorizing Commission; defines membership and reimbursement; requires a yearly report; defines which agencies are under the authority of the Commission. Meeting set for Feb. 20 at 9 a.m., in the Senate Education Committee.

Increased Instruction Time
Joint Tulsa/OKC Chambers Legislative Agenda
•  HB 3089, Nelson: Extends length of school day from six hours to six and one-half hours. Failed in House Common Education Committee.

National Board Certification (NBCT)
Joint Tulsa/OKC Chambers Legislative Agenda
•  HB 2186, Brown: Creates procedures to ensure full funding of the Education Leadership Oklahoma Act; stipulates that funds related to the Education Leadership Oklahoma Act be appropriated by Nov 1. Referred to House Appropriations and Budget Committee.

ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT
Increasing Oklahoma’s Domestic Energy Usage

Tulsa Metro Chamber Priority
Support legislative initiatives designed to enhance the market access for alternative and traditional fuels produced in Oklahoma.

•  HB 3006, Stiles: Creates the Oklahoma Compressed Natural Gas Vehicles Act. Referred to House Rules Committee.
•  SB 1175, Schulz: Promotes Gov. Fallin's "Oklahoma Energy First Plan;" requests that the Governor direct Sec. of Energy to form working groups to examine statutes for the 2013 legislative session; identifies the "Oklahoma Surface Damages Act." Referred to Senate Energy Committee.
•  SB 1627, Sen. Bingman and Rep. Peters: Creates the Oklahoma Energy Initiative designed to advance new research and development efforts relating to energy; defines goals. Referred to Senate Energy Committee.
•  SB 1628, Sen. Bingman and Rep. Peters: Modifies language relating to "The Interstate Oil Compact Fund of Oklahoma.” Referred to Senate Energy Committee.

HEALTH CARE
Increasing Oklahoma’s Number of Physicians
Tulsa/OKC Chamber Joint Agenda
Support incentives to recruit and retain primary care physicians and allied health professionals in Oklahoma, especially in rural and underserved areas.

•  HB 3058, Steele: Creates the Oklahoma Hospital Residency Training Act. Referred to House Appropriations and Budget Committee.
•  SB 1280, Schulz: Establishes the "Oklahoma Hospital Residency Training Program Act;" sets definitions and purpose of the act; sets guidelines for boards, contracting, agencies involved and their tasks; creates revolving fund. Voted “Do Pass” from the Senate Health and Human Services. Headed to Senate floor.

LABOR & HUMAN RESOURCES
Workers Compensation

Tulsa Metro Chamber Priority; Tulsa/OKC Chambers Joint Agenda
Maintain Oklahoma’s progress in improving its business climate by protecting recent workers compensation and legal systems reforms.

Workers Compensation

•  HB 2316, Key: Allows employers to be voluntarily exempt from the Oklahoma Worker's Compensation Code; provides circumstances for exempt status; requires employers exempt from Worker's Compensation Code to possess certain insurance; provides claims procedure. Referred to House Judiciary Committee. 
•  HB 2657, Jordan: Creates the Oklahoma Employee Injury Benefit Act; the act will provide a fair and balanced alternative to the Workers' Compensation code for providing benefits to injured employees. Referred to House Judiciary Committee.
•  SB 1378, Bingman: Creates Oklahoma Employee Injury Benefit Act; allows employers who meet criteria to opt-out of the Workers' Compensation Code; establishes criteria for other Workers' Compensation insurance. Referred to Senate Judiciary Committee.

Lawsuit Reform
•  HB 2663, Jordan: Creates the Private Attorney Retention Transparency Act. Referred to House Rules Committee.
•  SB 1805, Sykes: Defines sections relating to liability damages dealing with civil rights or antitrust cases. Referred to Senate Rules Committee.
•  SB 1809, Sykes: Defines sections in regards to protection from liability in torts. Referred to Senate Rules Committee.

Immigration
OneVoice Priority, Tulsa Metro Chamber Priority, Tulsa/OKC Chamber Joint Agenda
Support comprehensive immigration reform at the federal level and oppose further state legislation related to immigration reform.

•  HB 2091, Terrill: Persons not lawfully present in the United States shall not be eligible for scholarships, financial aid or resident tuition. Referred to House Rules Committee.
•  HB 2110, Christian: Persons who are not lawfully present in the United States are not eligible for postsecondary scholarships, financial aid or resident tuition. Referred to House Rules Committee.
•  HB 2111, Christian: Creates the "Oklahoma Illegal Immigration Act of 2011." Referred to House Rules Committee.
•  HB 2141, Steele: Creates the “Oklahoma Immigration Reform Act of 2011.” Referred to House Rules Committee.
•  HB 2792, Ortega: Creates the "Oklahoma Immigration Act of 2012.” Referred to House Rules Committee.
•  HB 2793, Ortega: Creates the "Immigration Reform Act.” Referred to House Rules Committee. 
•  HB 2798, Ortega: Creates the "Immigration Act of 2012.” Referred to House Rules Committee.
•  HJR 1088, Terrill: Sends to a vote of the people a measure that would allow bail to be denied to a person who has entered or remained in the United States illegally and has been charged with a serious felony offense. Referred to House Rules Committee.
•  SB 995, Coates: Creates the OK Guest Worker Permit Program Act; allows undocumented persons in the state to file for a guest worker permit to lawfully remain in the state under a sponsorship; sets administration regulations and implementation. Referred to Senate Judiciary Committee.

REGIONAL TOURISM
Oklahoma Museum of Popular Culture (POP)

OneVoice Priority
Support a state bond issue for capital investment in the Oklahoma Historical Society’s planned Oklahoma Museum of Popular Culture to maximize private monetary and land donations.

•  SB 1383, Crain: Allows the Oklahoma Capitol Improvement Authority to issue obligations to acquire real property, to provide funding for repairs and improvement to property and construction of the Oklahoma Popular Culture Museum not to exceed $40 million. Referred to Senate Appropriations Committee.

SMALL BUSINESS
Intangible Property Tax

Tulsa Metro Chamber Priority; Joint Tulsa/OKC Chambers Agenda
Maintain Oklahoma’s friendly tax environment for businesses and economic development through the prevention of an increased assessment of intangible ad valorem taxes.

•  SJR 52, Mazzei: Sends to a vote of the people a measure exempting personal property from the ad valorem tax or any other tax in lieu of ad valorem. Meeting set for Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., in Senate Finance Committee.

TRANSPORTATION
Transportation Funding

OneVoice Priority, Tulsa/OKC Chambers Joint Agenda
Defend all existing road funding, prevent any diversion of monies; and support increased funding for transportation by developing an adequate, comprehensive funding strategy to broaden the sources of funds and increase the total amount going to transportation statewide.

•  HB 2248, Shannon: Apportions certain monies to the Rebuilding Oklahoma Access and Driver Safety Fund; modifies appropriations to transportation funds. Referred to House A&B Subcommittee on General Government and Transportation.
•  HB 2249, Shannon: Modifies annual appropriation percentage requirements for contributions to the General Revenue Fund of the State Treasury; directs certain funds to be deposited in the County Improvements for Roads and Bridges Fund. Referred to House Appropriations and Budget Committee.
•  HB 3057, Steele: Reduces apportionment of fees raised from the Oklahoma Vehicle License and Registration Act into the General Revenue Fund; directs deposit of monies into two state funds related to transportation issues. Referred to House Appropriations and Budget Committee.
•  SB 1643, Marlatt: Changes apportionment of Rebuilding OK Access and Driver Safety Fund to $550 million. Voted “Do Pass” from Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government and Transportation; headed to full Senate Appropriations Committee.

Bridge Improvements 
•  HB 2451, Quinn: Creates the "Oklahoma Roads and Bridges Act." Referred to House Transportation Committee.
•  SB 1256, Stanislawski: Sets the percentages of monies collected pursuant to the Oklahoma Vehicle License and Registration Act that will go to the General Revenue Fund and to the High Priority State Bridge Revolving Fund. Voted “Do Pass” from Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government and Transportation; headed to full Senate Appropriations Committee.
•  SB 1642, Marlatt: Provides percentages and dates for monies to be remitted to state treasurers to be credited to the County Improvement for Roads and Bridges Fund. Voted “Do Pass” from Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government and Transportation; headed to full Senate Appropriations Committee.

Weigh Stations
Tulsa Metro Chamber Priorities; Tulsa/OKC Chamber Joint Agenda
Support methods to expedite the critical need for weigh station completion and weigh-in-motion infrastructure.

•  HB 2391, Liebmann: Alters apportionment of motor fuel assessment revenues; provides an apportionment to the Weigh Station Improvement Revolving Fund; removes apportionments to the Higher Education Facilities and State Transportation Funds. Meeting set for Feb. 20 at 10:30 a.m., in House A&B Subcommittee on Natural Resources and Regulatory Services.
•  SB 1144, Bingman: Removes the Higher Education Facilities Revolving fund as a recipient of the motor fuel tax and replaces it with the Weigh Station Improvement Revolving Fund. Voted “Do Pass” from Senate Appropriations Committee; headed to full Senate floor.



For more information on the Tulsa Metro Chamber’s legislative agenda and priorities, contact the Government Affairs office at 918-560-0211 or email Vice President of Government Affairs Chris Benge at chrisbenge@tulsachamber.com.

To view the 2012 Legislative Agenda: click here. 

Legislative Benefactors

We would like to acknowledge the Chamber's Partners in Legislative Success who have shown a continued commitment to the communities within the Tulsa region:

 
   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


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