Sen. Kenneth Corn, who has been pushing for weeks for an immediate special session to deal with senior nutrition program cuts and other catastrophic budget shortfalls, today said Sen. Glenn Coffee’s call for lawmakers to return to the Capitol in December “is the right thing to do for Oklahoma.”
Corn said Coffee’s decision to urge Gov. Brad Henry to call legislators back in December for a special session gives lawmakers the opportunity to restore “within a matter of days” $7.4 million in devastating budget cuts to the state’s senior nutrition programs.
“This must be our first priority,” Sen. Corn said, “and I completely agree with Sen. Coffee that all members of the Oklahoma Legislature must be involved in the budget-cutting process that we need to immediately undertake because of the state’s plummeting revenue picture.”
Coffee, who is the Senate President Pro-Tem and the leader of the Senate, issued his own call for a special session after a meeting with members of the Senate Republican caucus on Thursday.
Corn urged Henry not to delay and to call the Legislature back into session no later than December 1st.
He said he believes the governor will act swiftly to bring lawmakers back to the Capitol.
“Every moment, every day is critical, Gov. Henry knows that,” Corn said. The Poteau Democratic legislator said he will continue to garner signatures on his petition until the governor issues a call. Corn’s petition would give the Legislature the ability to call itself back into session immediately. Corn has obtained 49 signatures so far.
“I urge all my Republican and Democratic colleagues to sign the petition I sent to them and send it back to my office immediately. Their signatures will be further proof that Republicans and Democrats in the Legislature both realize the important task before us and that we are willing to work together to do what is best for Oklahoma and its people.”