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Penny Sales Tax Proposal Goes to Court

Emily Wendler / KOSU
University of Oklahoma's President David Boren speaks at the state capitol in October 2015, pitching his one-cent tax proposal.

At a State Supreme Court hearing on Thursday, attorneys argued over the legality of petition to fund education through a one-cent sales tax.

OU President David Boren’s petition aims to raise sales taxes in order to fund teacher pay raises and other aspects of education in the state. But there is an argument on whether the petition should be broken into multiple petitions, or remain as one.

Attorneys for the conservative think tank, OCPA Impact, say the petition is unconstitutional because it rolls multiple subjects—teacher pay, funding for higher ed, and raising taxes—all in to one petition.

Attorneys for supporters of the plan say it does not violate the constitution, because it deals with the general topic of improving the state’s public education.

There is no set time limit for the Supreme Court to rule, but Boren’s group anticipates that it will not be long.

Emily Wendler was KOSU's education reporter from 2015 to 2019.
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