Gov. Fallin signs repeal of hotel/motel tax

OKLAHOMA CITY – Despite opposition from teachers across the state, Gov. Fallin signed a measure that repeals a hotel and motel tax.

Earlier this month, Gov. Mary Fallin signed a bill that raises teachers’ salaries by an average of $6,100. It also gives $1,250 raises for support staff and adds $50 million in education funding.

The measure also included a $5 hotel and motel tax, but the Senate stressed that they would only approve the measure if that part of the bill was repealed.

HB 1012XX, which repeals the $5 tax on hotel and motel rooms, was signed into law on Tuesday.

“The revenue package that funded the teacher pay raises would not have passed the Senate with the required super majority, or three-fourths support, had a bipartisan agreement not been struck to repeal the hotel/motel tax,” Fallin said.

Fallin also signed HB 3375, which allows Las Vegas-style gaming and betting in the state, and is expected to bring in $22 million.

She also signed HB1019XX, also known as the ‘Amazon bill,’ would collect sales taxes from online retailers like Amazon, dedicating $20 million to education. However, officials say that bill would go to fund the education budget that has already passed, not add to it.

“This shows again that education is a priority with legislative leaders and me,” said Fallin. “The single-most important thing we can do to help Oklahomans have fulfilling and productive lives is improving the quality and outcomes of education.”