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OKC's "Better Streets, Safer City" special election held Tuesday

Alicia Fraire / Red Dirt Report
Street construction work on Western Avenue in Oklahoma City.
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OKLAHOMA CITY – Voters here head to the polls Tuesday to decide whether or not they want to support a special election called "Better Streets, Safer City,"which Red Dirt Report covered here.

Polls are open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday for the Better Streets, Safer City special election in Oklahoma City.

Find your polling location here.

State law requires voters to have their voter I.D. card or a state-, federal- or tribal-issued photo I.D. like a driver’s license or passport. Voters without I.D. can sign an affidavit affirming their identity to cast a provisional ballot.

All Oklahoma City voters registered on or before the election’s Aug. 18 registration deadline are eligible to cast a ballot.

About the election

The Oklahoma City Council voted to call a special election Sept. 12 for voters to consider investing more than $1.2 billion in critical infrastructure like streets and sidewalks, including an annual $26 million boost for public safety and other day-to-day operations.

The Council approved three proposals to present to voters:

·        A 10-year, $967 million bond package to invest in streets, police and fire facilities, parks and other basic needs. The bond package would succeed the almost-complete 2007 bond program.

·        A temporary, 27-month continuation of the expiring MAPS 3 penny sales tax to fund $240 million for street resurfacing, streetscapes, trails, sidewalks and bicycle infrastructure.

·        A permanent ¼ cent sales tax to fund $26 million annually in police services, fire protection and other critical services.

The proposals are presented on the ballot separately: One item for the ¼ cent permanent sales tax, one item for the temporary penny sales tax, and one item for each of the 13 bond propositions.

If voters approve the permanent ¼ cent sales tax, it would be the first increase in the permanent general operations sales tax rate since voters approved a 1-cent raise in 1976.

If voters approve the temporary penny sales tax, it would continue the use of the same penny previously approved as part of the MAPS program.

The average property tax rate of 16 mills will remain the same as it has since the 1980s.

Read more about the proposals at okc.gov/BetterSafer.

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About Red Dirt Report

Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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