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Delaware County Oklahoma Voters Choose Sales Tax Over Property

Delaware County, Oklahoma voters made a decision to increase the local sales tax rate rather than use property taxes to “…pay off a $13.5 million settlement of a lawsuit.” The lawsuit alleged sexual abuse at the county jail. Former inmates claimed their complaints about staff sexual abuse against inmates were ignored. “County officials voted last year to settle the lawsuit instead of enduring a trial and risk being hit with a costlier judgment.”

When a judgment must be paid, Oklahoma state law requires that property taxes fund the payment, unless another option is provided.  Tulsa World reported that “Should voters reject the sales-tax proposal, officials will be forced to raise property taxes by as much as 18 percent annually for three years to pay the settlement.”

According to unofficial results from the Oklahoma State Election Board, the proposition received 7,251 votes FOR and 515 AGAINST.  93.37 percent to 6.63 percent means the sales tax will increase by one-half cent. No information was provided as to when the sales tax will go into effect.

Read "Oklahoma: Local Sales Tax Hike For $22 Million Debt" to learn about another Oklahoma county that voted for sales tax increase to fund a settlement.

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Sales tax rates, rules, and regulations change frequently. Although we hope you'll find this information helpful, this blog is for informational purposes only and does not provide legal or tax advice.
Avalara Author
Susan McLain
Avalara Author Susan McLain
Susan McLain began her career as a technical writer in technology industries such as satellite networking and medical devices. Her skills encompass technical and marketing writing, usability engineering, verification and validation testing and protocol writing, requirements development, business analysis, technical illustration/graphic design and marketing. She has owned her own business providing service to small to medium sized business and in other positions, she has been in project management, documentation and marketing. She is currently the content specialist for Avalara helping to “make sales tax less taxing.”