Sales tax rate changes Jan. 1 in Oklahoma City as MAPS 3 tax ends, new taxes begin
A new sales tax rate takes effect Jan. 1 in Oklahoma City as collections begin on a permanent ¼-cent increase to the general fund sales tax and one temporary penny sales tax is replaced by another.
The new overall City of Oklahoma City sales tax rate on Jan. 1 is 4.125 percent, which is slightly more than 4 cents per dollar. That includes:
- 2 ¼ cents for the General Fund
- 1 cent for the temporary Better Streets, Safer City sales tax (replacing the expiring MAPS 3 penny sales tax)
- ¾ cent for public safety
- ⅛ cent for the Oklahoma City Zoo
The General Fund pays for most day-to-day City services. Historically, about two-thirds of the General Fund goes to public safety, along with the dedicated funding for Police and Fire services from the ¾ cent public safety sales tax.
As of Jan. 1, the new overall sales tax rate for most of Oklahoma City will be 8.625 percent, below the state average of 8.86 percent. That includes the 4.5 percent rate collected by the state government.
The overall Oklahoma City sales tax rate will be 8.975 percent in Canadian County and 8.875 percent in Cleveland County because of differences in the county sales tax rates.
About the new taxes
On Sept. 12, Oklahoma City voters approved the Better Streets, Safer City package of bond and sales tax projects to improve infrastructure in our community. Part of the package is a 27-month penny sales tax that takes effect Jan. 1, the day after the MAPS 3 penny sales tax expires. Another part is the permanent ¼-cent increase to the General Fund sales tax.
The penny sales tax is expected to generate $240 million. It includes $168 million for street resurfacing, $24 million for street enhancements, $24 million for sidewalks, $12 million for trails and $12 million for other bicycle infrastructure like bike lanes.
The debt-free projects will help address street conditions, the perennial top priority of Oklahoma City residents in the Council’s annual resident survey. The result will be smooth and safe streets for drivers, on-street amenities for recreational and commuting cyclists, and streetscapes and trails that protect pedestrians and cyclists and enhance opportunities for economic development.
The permanent ¼-cent increase to the General Fund sales tax rate is expected to generate about $26 million per year. It’s the first increase in the permanent general operations sales tax rate since voters approved a 1-cent raise in 1976. For a shopper in Oklahoma City, it adds an extra 25 cents to a $100 purchase.
The new, permanent tax will be invested primarily in the Police Department and Fire Department. The City Council intends to use the funds to pay for hiring 129 additional police officers and 57 more firefighters. The funds will also allow the Council to address other critical service needs.
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