It appears that the historic raise promised to Oklahoma’s teachers may be in trouble.
As The Guardian reports, despite promises made by state lawmakers to give Oklahoma’s educators a $6,100 a year pay increase, conservative activists in the state are circulating a petition to rescind the tax hikes meant to pay for the raises.
Oklahoma teachers are the worst paid in the United States, and some schools have gone to four-day weeks due to lack of funding. During the April statewide strike, lawmakers partially met demands for higher pay by instituting tax increases on cigarettes, cigars, motor and diesel fuel and the gross production of energy. The raise marked the first time Oklahoma had raised taxes in over a quarter of a century.
Now the group Oklahoma Taxpayers Unite, aligned with Senator Tom Coburn, hopes to overturn the pay raises by pushing through a ballot initiative.