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Controversial Museum Bond Issue Draws GOP Opposition

Filed by Michael Cross in Feature, Local News, News, Politics.
May 17, 2012

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Fourteen Senate Republicans are going on record in opposition to a $40 million bond issue to finish the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum in Oklahoma City.

The bond is supported by Governor Fallin.

Choctaw Senator Cliff Aldridge says he doesn’t have any problems with the cultural center itself which might be good for Oklahoma City, but can’t imagine putting more money into it from the state.

He says the Native American Cultural and Education Authority started this project just asking for $33 million from the state, then another $25 million and now wants an extra $40 million.

“We think the management of the construction of this facility has been poor at best and that’s one of the reasons why we’re trying to dissolve this agency and move it over into tourism to hopefully get some better guidance on anything that might happen.”

Aldridge says the state is already paying $5.5 million a year for $63 million in bonds, and this bond issue would raise the payments to $9 million a year.

Republican Senators who signed a pledge opposing the plan:

Sen. Patrick Anderson, Enid
Sen. Cliff Aldridge, Choctaw
Sen. Mike Mazzei, Bixby
Sen. Steve Russell, OKC
Sen. Josh Brecheen, Coalgate
Sen. Bill Brown, Broken Arrow
Sen. Kim David, Wagoner
Sen. Rick Brinkley, Owasso
Sen. Gary Stanislawski, Tulsa
Sen. Greg Treat, OKC
Sen. Mark Allen, Spiro
Sen. Eddie Fields, Wynona
Sen. Anthony Sykes, Moore
Sen. Ralph Shortey, OKC

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