For Immediate Release: February 23, 2006
Senate and House leaders announced agreements on supplemental
appropriations Thursday at the Capitol.
L-R: Sen. Frank Shurden, Rep. Mark Liotta, Sen. Kenneth
Corn, Rep. Jim Newport, Rep. John Trebilcock, Rep. Curt
Roggow and Sen. Jeff Rabon.
House & Senate Leaders Announce Supplemental Appropriations
leaders in the House and Senate today announced a supplemental
appropriations agreement that provides crucial funds
for prisons, repairs for the state’s worst bridges
and replenishes dollars spent fighting wildfires across
is a true bipartisan agreement, and it emphasizes responsible
government without raising taxes,” said Speaker
Todd Hiett (R-Kellyville). “I commend our budget
negotiators who have worked hard to meet needs in Oklahoma,
while acting as good stewards of taxpayers’ dollars.
The people of Oklahoma expect us to work to-gether in
a businesslike way. And we have.”
have a unique opportunity this session to make historic
investments in the future of Oklahoma,” said Sen-ate
President Pro Tempore Mike Morgan. “This bi-partisan
agreement represents the kind of approach that I am
hopeful we can take throughout the session. We must
look beyond the next election and focus on the next
gen-eration. Our budget framers have done that and they
deserve recognition for their hard work and perseverance.”
of the agreement include:
$100 million for the state’s worst bridges. About
$93 million for the bridge fund would come from an infra-structure
and economic development fund established last year.
The remaining $7 million would come from current cash
$25 million of state funds set aside for county bridges.
The $25 million will come from expected surplus money
estimated to exceed the allowed size of the Rainy Day
account. Those funds will become available at the end
of the fiscal year. The funds will be administered by
the Oklahoma Department of Transportation.
been well documented that Oklahoma has the worst bridges
in the nation. There’s no more responsible in-vestment
we could make with some of the surplus funds available
to us this year than to give the Department of Transportation
the resources it needs to make our roads and bridges
safe for Oklahoma families,” said Senator Frank
Shurden, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Sub-Committee
on General Government and Transpor-tation.
is the first step in making a responsible investment
in our bridges and roads this year without raising taxes,”
said Rep. Jim Newport, R-Ponca City, vice chair of House
Appropriations and Budget Committee.
A $24 million supplemental appropriation for the Department
of Corrections, providing for a $2,800 raise for corrections
officers and prison facility staff. The $24 million
will also allow the department to hire an addi-tional
75 corrections officers and 50 parole officers in the
current fiscal year. Leaders have also agreed to annu-alize
the supplemental to allow the addition of 150 corrections
officers and 50 parole officers in FY 2007.
is a businesslike solution that moves us toward making
Oklahoma’s prisons and public safety a priority,
while giving correctional officers better pay for protecting
us from our most dangerous citizens,” said Rep.
John Trebilcock, R-Broken Arrow, chair of the House
Appropriations and Budget Subcommittee on Public Safety
and the Judiciary.
courageous corrections officers continue to work in
dangerous conditions. This agreement will give them
all a boost in pay and allow the Department of Corrections
to finally begin filling its vacant positions to create
a safer environment inside and outside the walls of
our state’s prisons,” said Senator Kenneth
Corn, chairman of the Senate Sub-Committee on Public
Safety and Judiciary.
$3.6 million for the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture
to offset the costs of fighting wildfires since No-vember
seen firsthand by visiting the incident command post
in Shawnee the cost and devastation caused by wildfires
across the state this year. Rural firefighters have
been real heroes to all of us, and they deserve our
help,” said Rep. Curt Roggow, R-Enid, chair of
the House A&B Subcommittee on Natural Resources
and Regu-latory Services.
this appropriation we are addressing the immediate needs
and making sure Oklahoma will be prepared should we
be hit with another rash of wildfires in the coming
weeks. We have several new proposals that are on the
table and we will continue to look at the long-term
needs of our rural fire departments throughout the ses-sion,”
said Senator Jeff Rabon, chairman of the Senate Appropriations
Sub-Committee on Natural Resources and Regulatory Services.
$4.6 million for OHLAP (Oklahoma Higher Learning Access
Program) to offset the casino gaming revenue shortfall.
The agreement also includes funds for the state Supreme
Court ($3.8 million) to offset a Judicial Fund short-fall,
as well as $456,000 for OSBI to provide support for
a DNA evidence database.
bipartisan accord also fulfills previous agreements
made by the Speaker, Senate President Pro Tempore and
the governor for winter heating bills assistance ($5.4
million) and funds to celebrate Oklahoma’s centennial
more information contact:
Senate President Pro Tem's Office - (405) 521-5605