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Rep. West Comments on the Supreme Court’s Decision Moving Forward Featured

Written by  Wednesday, 16 August 2017 12:33
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OKLAHOMA CITY – State Rep. Rick West, R-Heavener, issued the following statement after meeting with the Oklahoma House of Representatives’ Republican Caucus yesterday.


The group discussed how to move forward after the Oklahoma Supreme Court declared Senate Bill 845 unconstitutional.


The bill, known as the Smoking Cessation Act of 2017, would have generated $215 million by placing an additional $1.50 per pack fee on cigarettes.


“I walked away from the meeting Monday feeling confident that our state has several options as we seek to deal with the Supreme Court’s decision. We need to wait for the Supreme Court’s opinions on two other cases it also heard Aug. 8 before we finalize any plans to ensure the Legislature is taking the most efficient, fiscally responsible steps to fill this new hole. There’s no need to panic, though – health care agencies have enough money to last until the end of the year and possibly into the beginning of 2018. Truth is, I expect we’ll have a plan in place long before December or January.


“The economy is rebounding, and our state is on better footing than it was a year ago. We’ll get out of this economic contraction cycle soon enough, but in the meantime, we need to focus on making wise fiscal decisions every step of the way.”

David Deaton

Digital Editor at Oklahoma Welcome

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