The Black Friday bill, which would make low-cost and discount sales legal in Oklahoma, overwhelmingly passed the Oklahoma House of Representative Wednesday 69-23. The new law will allow retailers the opportunity to offer deep discounts on everything from big-screen televisions to computers, ipads, furniture and clothing. Supporters of the bill said today’s vote is a major victory for Oklahoma consumers.
“Why should we penalize Oklahomans for wanting a good deal?” said Tom Newell, R-Seminole, House author. “The old law was outdated and put Oklahoma at a competitive disadvantage to other states that could lure shoppers with significant bargains. This bill is good for our economy, it’s great for retailers and it’s certainly good news for consumers.”
The old law was enacted in 1941 and forced retailers to mark up merchandise by at least six percent. A December 2011 opinion from the Oklahoma Attorney General confirmed that current state law bars all “Black Friday” and other low-price sales, even if they are only temporary. As a result, many retailers shut down their “Black Friday,” Back-to-School and other sales until the law was modernized.
Newell said the current bill does not impact fuel, prescription drugs or groceries.
The new law goes into effect Nov 1, just in time for holiday shopping.