Bill Watch: Opportunities to make Oklahomans better off economically this session

This session, the Legislature will have several opportunities to improve the lives of hard-working Oklahomans and their families. Legislators have filed bills to create second chances for the justice-involved, make sure workers have paid time off to care for their own health and the health of their loved ones, and restore the full value of the Earned Income Tax Credit. All of these would be great steps toward creating an Oklahoma that appropriately values and fairly rewards the labor of its citizens. [More...]

Statement: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau reversal of rules protecting consumers from payday debt trap will harm Oklahomans

Last week the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) proposed to reverse their own rule, issued in 2017, protecting consumers from the harms of predatory lending, despite the lack of new evidence that the rule needs to be reconsidered. Oklahoma Policy Institute opposes this proposed repeal and strongly urges the CFPB to allow the 2017 rule to take effect as scheduled later this year. Oklahomans are depending on these promised protections. [More...]

Bill Watch: Quieter year expected on the tax front

Some of the fiercest battles of recent legislative sessions have centered on tax policy as lawmakers debated competing tax proposals to limit funding cuts and provide teachers a raise. This year, thanks to a strong economy and recent tax increases, the state's budget outlook is greatly improved. Yet even if the stakes are lower, lawmakers still filed hundreds of bills this session that would revise Oklahoma's tax system. [More...]

SB 11: Delaying Pre-K would be a step back for Oklahoma’s children

[Image Source: U.S. Department of Education / Flickr] SB 11 would move cutoff dates for children entering pre-K from September 1 to July 1. Oklahoma would be the only state to have a cutoff before July 31st. The change would delay pre-K eligibility by a year for children who are two months shy of the new cutoff date. SB 11 would particularly hurt low-income families and children of color who benefit most from pre-K programs. [More...]

New economic rankings show Oklahoma falling further behind

There are quite a few reasons to be optimistic about Oklahoma this year. Unemployment is low and the state expects to have a budget surplus this year, the first in quite some time. But despite this good news, too many Oklahomans are still struggling to make ends meet and build a better future for themselves and their families. For the third straight year, Oklahoma has dropped in the Prosperity Now Scorecard rankings. This year, we rank 43rd in the financial health and overall well-being of our residents - that's down from 34th in 2016. [More...]

2019 Priority: Safeguard access to quality health care by rejecting ‘junk coverage’

Download this fact sheet as a printable pdf here. Read about the rest of OK Policy’s 2019 Legislative Policy Priorities here. Before 2013, widely-available junk health insurance coverage left patients at the mercy of big insurance companies, with coverage that… Read more [More...]

2019 Priority: Expand opportunities for occupational licenses

Download this fact sheet as a printable pdf here. Read about the rest of OK Policy’s 2019 Legislative Policy Priorities here. Economic opportunities are sharply limited for Oklahomans who have been involved in the criminal justice system. These Oklahomans face… Read more [More...]

2019 Priority: Increase renter protections from landlords who fail to maintain safe properties or file frivolous evictions

Download this fact sheet as a printable pdf here. Read about the rest of OK Policy’s 2019 Legislative Policy Priorities here. Tens of thousands of Oklahoma families face eviction each year. Despite relatively low housing costs, Tulsa and Oklahoma City… Read more [More...]

2019 Priority: Improve regulation and prevent expansion of predatory lending

Download this fact sheet as a printable PDF here. Download key points on stopping the debt trap here. Read about the rest of OK Policy’s 2019 Legislative Policy Priorities here. Payday loan storefronts are a common sight in much of… Read more [More...]

2019 Priority: Strengthen Working Family Tax Credits

Download this fact sheet as a printable pdf here. Read about the rest of OK Policy’s 2019 Legislative Policy Priorities here. In a tax code that provides multiple breaks for high-income individuals and businesses, Oklahoma offers just three tax credits… Read more [More...]