Oklahoma Forestry Services says it's closing four offices and reducing services as part of a restructuring program forced by budget reductions.
Forestry Services Director George Geissler says the agency plans to reallocate resources to maximize its remaining services. While some services will no longer be available to landowners in western Oklahoma, all 77 Oklahoma counties will continue to receive wildfire suppression support.
Offices being closed include those in Enid, Burns Flat and Ardmore in the western half of the state and Battiest in southeastern Oklahoma. Employees who work at the offices are being reassigned to other locations or offered different positions within the agency.
“In order to ensure long-term success, we decided to meet our budget challengers by restructuring as opposed to across the board cuts,” said George Geissler, Director, Oklahoma Forestry Services. “It is never easy to close offices or cut programs, but we are reallocating resources to maximizing our remaining services to Oklahomans.”
State lawmakers imposed budget cuts to many state agencies this year to help fill a $1.3 billion state budget shortfall due largely to low energy prices.