Tax credit proposed for storm shelters

TULSA - Legislation is moving through Washington to help people install storm shelters.

"Claim to this incentive would not require dealing with a big bureaucracy," Senator Jim Inhofe said on Capitol Hill this week.

He's trying to make it easier for everyone in the country to install a storm shelter, with a $ 2,500 tax credit.

Oklahoma recently issued $6 million in federal funds to about 3-thousand families.

The lawmaker says past programs like that required a lot of paperwork.

His bill is different.

"You don't have to fill out the forms, you don't have to go through all the red tape. That's why some of the people don't do it under the existing programs."

More and more people are getting units installed.

Jim Fritz of Best Storm Shelters sees it first hand.

"We've got so many we've lost track," he said.

Fritz has been selling shelters and safe rooms for more than 20 years.

This summer is one of the busiest he's seen; it started after the tornado in Joplin.

"We're really really busy and we're still playing catch-up."

"Just living here in Oklahoma you never know what the weather's going to be like," Angela Ragland purchased her shelter about two years ago.

It's in the family garage.

"Having small children makes me feel more comfortable that I can walk out if the weather gets to where we need to take shelter it's here in the house," Ragland said.

They've never had to use it before.

But Ragland doesn't think twice about getting another and Senator Inhofe's bill would certainly help.

"We've actually purchased another house and we are looking into getting the same shelter over there.. one that is inside, in the garage as well," Ragland said.

The purchase and installation starts at about $2,500.

Print this article Back to Top