Word is getting around about Oklahoma's rise in The Tax Foundation's annual State Business Tax Climate Index, which is regarded as the gold standard for measuring states’ tax competitiveness. Oklahoma ascended to 19th in the Index's overall business tax climate, improving significantly from the 30th place ranking the state received two years ago.
The news media is letting Oklahomans know about the state's impressive tax climate ranking, speaking with both State Chamber President and CEO Chad Warmington and State Chamber Research Foundation Executive Director Ben Lepak.
KOCO 5 News anchor Kylie Walker interviewed Warmington about the significance of the new ranking, the tax reform measures that led to the rise, and what needs to be done at the State Capitol to continue the ascent.
The Tax Foundation attributes Oklahoma’s tax climate progress to the adoption of reform measures championed by SCRF that were adopted in subsequent legislative sessions. The Oklahoma Legislature eliminated the marriage penalty in the income tax, repealed the franchise tax and adopted permanent full expensing of capital investments. Those reforms earned Oklahoma the following placements in the 2024 Index: fourth in corporate tax, 24th in individual income tax, 38th in sales tax, 15th in property tax and second in unemployment insurance tax.
Lepak was featured in a News 9 report that took a close look at Oklahoma's tax reform efforts. Lepak spoke about the legislation that must be passed to get Oklahoma into the Index's top 10 for tax climate.
Trusted business news website The Journal Record also covered the new ranking, giving its readers an in-depth look at the state's individual income tax rate, which ranges from 0.25 percent to 4.75 percent. Lepak was interviewed for the article. He provided insight on how the individual income tax can be improved. Click here to read that report.
SCRF has a plan for personal income tax reform that would launch Oklahoma into the top 10. The plan calls for the state to simplify the income tax from an unnecessarily complicated six-bracket graduated tax to a single bracket flat tax. It recommends an increased standard deduction and well-designed revenue triggers that would lead to future rate reductions, ensuring immediate and future tax relief for all taxpayers, while being responsible with the state budget.
Click the button below to see the State Chamber's proposal for giving Oklahomans the personal income tax plan they deserve.