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Tax break could be coming for Oklahoma’s richest

OKLAHOMA CITY – The richest residents of Oklahoma may be getting a new tax break.

It is a victory for Governor Mary Fallin, who supported a cut in the top income tax rate.

Senate Bill 1247 would reduce the top income tax rate from 5.25 percent to 5 percent if state revenue projections are greater than projections in December 2014.

“Our state has seen economic growth and record revenues due to our competitive income tax policies and pro-business environment,” said Rep. Leslie Osborn. “This measure allows Oklahomans greater control over their hard-earned money. They will either spend or invest those dollars and further strengthen our economy.”

The tax cut measure will be conditional on improvement to state revenues.

Oklahoma schools rank in list of top high schools across the U.S.

U.S. News and World Report has released its list of the top high schools across the country.

Many Oklahoma high schools made the cut.

Harding Charter in Oklahoma City is ranked #1 in the state followed by Dove Science Academy and Edmond North.

In all, more than 75 Oklahoma schools made the 2014 best schools list.

MORE: Complete ranking of Oklahoma high schools

According to the report, schools must have been awarded a national gold or silver medal to be eligible.

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State leaders looking to increase school funding

OKLAHOMA CITY – On Wednesday, the Senate is slated to vote on a bill that would increase funding for Oklahoma schools.

House Bill 2642, also known as the Securing Educational Excellence Fund (SEEF), would increase public school funding by $600,000,000.

Senator John Ford, a co-author of the bill, said he believes this bill will help more students complete their high school education.

Our latest figures show one additional day of instruction will cost about $22 million, so the bill mandates that for every $60 million, we’ll add a day of instruction,” Ford said.  “Students will be able to learn more.  As a result we’ll see more students complete high school, and they’ll be better prepared for their next step in life.  This also should provide additional pay for teachers.”

HB 2642 passed the House and will move to the Senate on Wednesday.

Allergy Alert: Tree pollen to blame for the sneezing, watery eyes

OKLAHOMA CITY - The Oklahoma Allergy and Asthma Clinic is warning those with allergies to just stay inside today.

Experts have issued an allergy alert because of high levels of Oak pollen.

Oak pollen is in the “very high” category and the OAAC said we are currently under an “extreme exposure” situation.

If you have allergies, the best remedy is to stay inside.

Specialists said this is especially important for those with allergic bronchial asthma.

Officials also recommend keeping the windows closed, taking a shower after coming inside and leaving shoes outside so you don’t track pollen throughout the house.

Students frustrated after testing trouble for second year in a row

OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma’s Superintendent of Schools is suggesting the State Board of Education not renew the contract of testing vendor CTB/McGraw-Hill for the next fiscal year.

The children started the end of year standardized testing Monday and more than 8,000 computers went out in the middle of it all.

“I would preferred if they got the problem fixed before they had us take the test because it was so distracting,” Kayleigh Vaughan said.

Vaughan said she and her classmates were concentrating on the algebra test when computers started shutting down.

“I mean all the teachers were running around trying to fix it,” Vaughan said.

Despite the glitches, she managed to make it through the test because she said school leaders warned problems were a possibility.

“They explained it to us in the beginning. They told us they’d been having problems and what to do if it happened,” said Vaughan.