Oklahoma gets in on ballot measure action; certifies property tax proposal
OKLAHOMA CITY, Oklahoma: It's official. Oklahoma has a measure on the November 6, 2012 general election ballot for voters to decide. Based on historical trends in the state, there is plenty more activity to come relating to ballot questions, but for now, voters will be able to decide on whether or not to lower caps on property taxes.
The bill, HJR 1002, which got final approval on April 21, 2011, will ask voters to put a 3 percent annual cap on future property tax increases. The cap is currently at 5 percent. The Oklahoma State Senate voted in favor of sending HJR 1002 to the ballot with a vote of 26-19 during the week of April 11, 2011, sending it to the Oklahoma House of Representatives for consideration. There, it was passed with a vote of 77-16 on April 20, 2011, placing it for public decision next year.
According to reports, there were two House measures being considered in 2011 state legislative session, as well as one Senate proposal. The proposed Senate bill, SJR 5, was similar to HRJ 1002, in that it would also place a 3 percent annual cap.
The other measure, HJR 1001, would put a permanent freeze on property tax levels for senior citizens who exceeded 65 years of age. HJR 1001 will not be considered for the ballot, at least not during 2011 state legislative session. The measure did not meet an April 14, 2011 deadline for consideration. The measure could still be considered during 2012 session for 2012 ballot access. State Representative David Dank was the sponsor of both House measures, while State Senator Jim Reynolds was the sponsor of the Senate bill.