OEA Joins Effort Challenging SQ 799 Petition

May 17, 2018

Today, the Oklahoma Education Association joined a group of taxpayers and education organizations to file a challenge to the State Question 799 referendum petition. SQ 799 seeks a voter veto of HB1010xx, which is projected to generate about $450 million in state revenue.

You can find a copy of the pleadings filed in the challenge below. In general, the challenge outlines several deficiencies in the petition filing:

  • A description of the bill at the top of each signature sheet omits mention and discussion of the little cigar tax and the hotel/motel tax increases authorized in HB1010xx.
  • The description is misleading and written backward, stating approval of the state question would "repeal" HB1010xx.
  • The referendum petition doesn't include an exact copy of the bill that would be referred to the people. 

“The Oklahoma Education Association is proud to stand up for public school students by challenging the SQ 799 petition,” said President Alicia Priest. “The language in the veto referendum is confusing and misleading, and is a direct attack on funding for our students. Its effect would further exacerbate the teacher shortage, increase class sizes, and prevent a much-needed teacher pay raise.

“We are confident the State Supreme Court will see how poorly the petition is written, declare it invalid and strike it from the ballot.”

The next step is for the Oklahoma Supreme Court to schedule a time to hear our challenge. We'll keep you updated as the process moves forward.


 

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