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 sales tax will be invested in the City’s General Fund. About two thirds of the General Fund goes to public safety services, with the rest paying for other basic services like animal control, parks and transit.
The City Council intends to use the funds to pay for hiring 129 additional police officers, and hiring 57 more firefighters to staff two additional fire stations and bring an idled fire engine back into service. The funds will also allow the Council to reverse the cutbacks to other critical services included in recent budgets.
The permanent ¼ cent sales tax adds an estimated $26 million per year to the General Fund.