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Capitol Report with Pat McGuigan and Alex Cameron: water wars, pay hikes, sales tax revenues

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Uploaded on Feb 17, 2012

The "water wars" continue to intensify, and CapitolBeatOK's Pat McGuigan tells News9's Alex Cameron the state may be at the front end of years of litigation. A move by the Chickasaw and Choctaw to seek "partial summary judgment" in their lawsuit against the state assures the disagreement is intensifying. On the other hand, if the state (Attorney General Scott Pruitt) wins on jurisdictional questions, the suit could end abruptly. Another "game-changer" would come if the Caddo tribe's rights make them an "indispensible party." McGuigan says in the long run the U.S. government may become active in any resolution of the issue. In other news on this week's "Capitol Report" segment, McGuigan says the alliance of House Speaker Kris Steele and Minority Leader Scott Inman in opposition to a pay hike for statewide elected officials and judges virtually assures the pay increase idea is dead for this year. The latest economic indicators, meanwhile, are not only good, they are historic: Oklahoma's sales tax revenues last month were the highest in history, according to the Office of State Finance. However, continued low natural gas prices (and thus lower gross production tax receipts) could put a damper on next week's revenue estimates by the state Board of Equalization.

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