Senate overrides Governor Stitt’s vetoes on tribal compacts

Collaborator: Brittany Harlow
Published: 07/25/2023, 1:51 PM

(OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla.) The Oklahoma Senate voted to override Governor Kevin Stitt’s vetoes of two bills to extend tribal compacts in special session on Monday. 

Senate Bill 26X extends the tobacco products excise tax compact until the end of 2024.

House Bill 1005x allows any tribe with an existing motor vehicle licensing or registration agreement with the state to extend the agreement until the end of next year. 

Stitt vetoed the bills earlier this year, saying they circumvent executive authority to negotiate contracts and are not in the state’s best interests. 

“I am trying to protect Eastern Oklahoma from turning into a reservation, and I’ve been working to ensure the compacts are the best deal for all four million Oklahomans,” Stitt said after the vetoes. “Unfortunately, the Senate seems to disagree and used an illegitimate process to do so.” 

The Supreme Court affirmed much of Eastern Oklahoma is in fact reservation land in their 2020 McGirt v. Oklahoma ruling. 

Tribal leaders praised the decision on Monday. 

Muscogee Creek Nation Principal Chief David Hill said he was honored to stand with his fellow tribal leaders at the Capitol in Oklahoma City to see the Senate override the Governor’s vetoes.

“We agree with the legislature that One Oklahoma means all of us together, not divided,” Hill said. “Together, we’re greater.”

The House voted to override Stitt’s veto of the shared motor vehicle tax revenue bill on June 12, but must vote to override the governor’s veto on the tobacco compact extension if it is to be upheld. 

The House is expected to meet July 31. 


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