It’s an area that has not received much attention, but the effort being led by state Rep. T.W. Shannon to review the state’s thousands of assets (more than 9,000 buildings) is timely and definitely needed. Taxpayers concerned about government waste will find particularly encouraging Rep. Shannon’s focus on taking care of the asset needs of the core functions of government while liquidating anything that does not contribute to this purpose.
The leadership being shown by Rep. Shannon, Rep. Tom Newell (who wants to phase out Oklahoma’s income tax), Sen. Greg Treat (who wants to restrict expenses to core functions), and Rep. Leslie Osborn (who also believes in prioritizing) is exactly what’s needed at the state capitol if policymakers truly want to extract from citizens the lowest amount of taxes possible. Let’s hope more lawmakers in the 2012 session plan to delve into every area of government, revealing efficiencies and reductions that can be achieved. Just as the wise move of Rep. T.W. Shannon has shown, it will be very revealing to see the government excess that still exists. It is this kind of leadership that will make a complete phase-out of the state’s personal income tax a reality.