By Rep. LUNDY KIGER
Oklahoma has entered into a new era providing our state a real chance for real change for the future. But, to get to this new place, there’s still much that needs to change in how we view our future. There is much cause for optimism, however, in that we have a new progressive-thinking governor who is working with leaders of both the House and Senate who already were working on improvements prior to the governor being elected.
For decades, Oklahoma has been blessed and cursed with high and low commodity prices often dictating how we fund our state agencies that provide the core services to address the needs of our people.
We should be thankful for our oil and gas producers and for the past 10 years. Up until now, however, we’ve often been losing the revenue battle that has resulted in state employees fleeing the state or finding new careers.
With new supportive executive leadership comes an era of new thinking. Many are open to discussing new ideas that could help change the way we live and look at our future and make us less dependent on the price of oil in meeting our financial needs.
With the state receiving annually over approximately $20 billion from often inconsistent revenue streams, we must secure more stable sources to fund our core services at the levels needed.
But there are other options available to us to do more with the money we have that can truly bring more successful and consistent financial times resulting in a stronger and new Oklahoma.
With the top 5 most costly state agencies coming under the control of the governor and both chambers of the Legislature, this will yield savings we’ve never before had the opportunity to find.
This is why I supported all five bills to move these agency directors and their advisory boards under executive and legislative control. I hope to be assigned to help monitor one of these super and costly agencies in November.
There are many other ways to find efficiencies within the revenues the state already receives without having to raise taxes or fees.
I look forward to discussing these ideas with you more face to face in the coming weeks as I’m preparing to hold Town Hall meetings in each part of District 3 to hear your thoughts and feedback.
If you would like to help organize a Town Hall in your city, please email me at [email protected].
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