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Referee to hear Oklahoma drilling tax cut lawsuit

BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Published: July 29, 2014
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A lawsuit that challenges a new state law that sets Oklahoma’s tax on oil and natural gas production is headed to the Oklahoma Supreme Court.

A Supreme Court referee is scheduled to hear oral presentations Tuesday in the lawsuit filed by Oklahoma City attorney Jerry Fent. The lawsuit alleges the law is unconstitutional because it was approved in the final days of the 2014 Oklahoma Legislature and was not approved by at least three-fourths of the members of the House and Senate.

The Oklahoma Constitution says revenue bills cannot be passed during the last five days of a legislative session and must receive a three-fourths vote.

The legislation taxes oil and gas wells at 2 percent for the first three years of production. The rate then jumps to 7 percent.