Those who support the tax increase say the safety issues are too serious to ignore any longer, that lives have and will continue to be lost if something is not done immediately. 50 cents, they assert, is a very small price to pay for the life-saving benefits of the enhancements.
Proponents of the tax include:
- Zach Taylor, Director of the Association of Central Oklahoma Governments
- Ron Norick, Former Oklahoma City Mayor
- Gary Marrs, Oklahoma City Councilman
- Jeff Lara, Yukon Fire Chief
- Dick Reynolds, Former Norman Mayor
- Ann Taylor, Former Nichols Hills Mayor
Opponents of the tax increase site several reasons for their opposition. One, many say the tax increase won't be enough to fund the necessary enhancements and that the measure allows the Legislature to authorize greater taxes without another vote of the people.
Two, some assert it should not be the people's tab to pick up. Cities have already collected enough money in cell phone taxes to pay for the upgrades, some politicians have said, but the money was used for other things.
Those who have come out to oppose the tax in recent media include:
- Richard Prawdzienski, Former Libertarian Party State Chairman
- Clark Duffe, Former State Senate Candidate
Where It Stands
On December 13, 2005, voters approved the measure to implement a 50 cent per cell phone monthly tax to pay for enhanced 911 services for cell phones. Oklahoma County voted nearly 4 to 1 in favor of the tax. The service is expected to be in place in approximately 18 months. Until then, emergency officials strongly recommend cell phone users be aware of their locations at all times.
POLL: Do you support the decision to pass a 50 cent per cell phone monthly tax to pay for enhanced emergency services?