Monday, March 7, 2016
OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today proposed using the state’s savings account, the Rainy Day Fund, to partially offset last week’s deepened budget cuts to common education and prisons.
The governor suggested using $51 million for public schools and $21 million for the Department of Corrections. The Rainy Day Fund contains $385 million, of which $144.4 million is available to address the 2016 fiscal year revenue failure.
"Four-day school weeks and draconian cuts at prisons are not acceptable and are not going to happen. The deepened revenue failure cuts have changed the budget situation in a way that requires immediate action, so I support accessing the Rainy Day Fund for common education and prisons,” said Fallin. “This is the most responsible option available today to keep vital state services at acceptable levels until the Legislature and I reach agreement on the recurring revenues necessary to fund these services in the long run.
"We must put recurring revenues on the table this session, like I proposed in my executive budget, or we will be having this same problem next year, the year after that and years after that. The Rainy Day Fund option is a one-time fix, but we need to do the tough work to establish a permanent fix in the budget we pass this session."