© 2021 KOSU
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Oklahoma City Council To Consider Sales Tax And Bond Measures

Brian Hardzinski / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange
Three proposals could provide millions of dollars in funding for Oklahoma City roads, sidewalks and other public facilities.

Three new sales tax and bond proposals could raise more than a billion dollars for public projects in Oklahoma City.

Two of the proposals would replace the one-cent MAPS 3 sales tax, which will expire at the end of this year, according to a city press release. Part of the MAPS tax would be replaced by a permanent one-quarter-cent sales tax to be reinvested into the city’s General Fund, which pays for public safety, animal control, parks, transit and other basic services. The tax is expected to generate $26 million per year.

The rest of the MAPS tax would be replaced by a temporary three-quarter-cent sales tax, which is expected to generate $180 million in revenue. $126 million would fund street resurfacing, $9 million would pay for trails, $9 million would fund bicycle infrastructure, $18 million would go toward sidewalks and $9 million would pay for streetscapes.

The largest proposal is a general obligation bond package totaling $967 million. The bond would allow the city to pay for infrastructure projects without raising property taxes. Planned expenditures include:

  • $28 million for traffic control
  • $27 million for bridges
  • $138 million for parks and recreation
  • $62 million for drainage control
  • $60 million for economic and community development
  • $45 million for firefighting facilities
  • $31 million for police facilities
  • $24 million for libraries $20 million for transit
  • $20 million for the Civic Center complex
  • $13 million for city maintenance facilities
  • $9 million for the downtown area

The plan will pay for necessary public services without trying to pass a politically unpopular tax increase.
“Tax increases are difficult to pass in this climate. The economy’s a little slow,” City Manager Jim Couch said. “We need the resources to repave streets. We cover a lot of area and we have a lot of streets that need resurfacing, and this is an attempt to respond to our citizens’ desires.”

The Oklahoma City Council will consider a public forum on the proposals on June 13 and will vote on June 20. If approved, each proposal will be subject to a public vote on September 12.

KOSU is nonprofit and independent. We rely on readers like you to support the local, national, and international coverage on this website. Your support makes this news available to everyone.

Give today. A monthly donation of $5 makes a real difference.
Related Content