The Oklahoma Legislature has reached an impasse over the sin that is so-called of gambling and cigarettes.
Oklahoma House Minority Leader Scott Inman wants to expand gaming, but their Republican constituents think he should put that idea in his pipe and smoke it.
Both the Oklahoma Senate and House are controlled by the GOP, but that’sn’t stopping the minority celebration from blocking a cigarette tax increase proposed by House Republicans.
Democrats in the lower chamber are doing so in order to give their side leverage in ongoing budget negotiations, and their desires to expand gambling and allow casinos that are tribal offer roulette and dice games.
Oklahoma lawmakers are searching for ways to close an $878 million money gap. While Republicans can pass the budget of the choosing, they need a three-fourths vote to raise smoke taxes, and the 26 Democrats in the 101-member House are not budging.
‘We’ve said all along that a cigarette tax is just a Band-Aid on a bullet hole,’ Oklahoma House Minority Leader Scott Inman (D-District 94) told the Associated Press. ‘You’ve surely got to have additional revenue.’
This week, the home and Senate budget committees recommended a $1.50 per tobacco cigarette pack tax enhance. To really make the budget whole with only that tariff hike, Oklahomans would require to purchase roughly 585.3 million packs of smokes.