Mary Fallin

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Governor Mary Fallin has vetoed most of the latest budget bill, while keeping temporary funding intact  for the health and human services adversely affected when the cigarette fee was ruled unconstitutional.

Fallin announced the veto late Friday, after both legislative chambers had adjourned the special session. In a press release, she said she will be calling back lawmakers soon for a second special session.

Governor Mary Fallin says she's uncertain what she is going to do with the latest budget bill to cover the $215 million shortfall. She has said in the past she would veto any measure which makes cuts to state agencies and spends cash reserves.

With the latest budget fix, Fallin says lawmakers are kicking the can down the road.

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill about the failure by the State House to pass a measure to increase taxes on cigarettes, gas, low-pont beer and oil and gas wells to help fix a $215M shortfall in the budget, the State Health Department says it can't make payroll at the end of the month without a supplemental appropriation from the legislature and a national credit rating agency warns Oklahoma could drop in its credit rating because of a failure to fix the budget.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

There was a lot of hope pinned on Wednesday's vote in the Oklahoma House.

For seven weeks, lawmakers have argued over how to fill a $215 million dollar budget hole. But a vote on a bill touted as a “grand bargain” failed.

Lawmakers have largely agreed to increase taxes on beer, tobacco and fuel. The biggest sticking point throughout the special session has been whether to raise taxes on oil and natural gas production.

Jacob McCleland / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

Five weeks after calling a special session, Gov. Mary Fallin announced Monday that Republicans in the state House and Senate have reached a budget deal to fill a $215 million shortfall.

Updated Oct. 23 at 1:43 p.m. with Democratic response.

Fallin said the agreement would increase the cigarette tax by $1.50 per pack of cigarettes, hike the motor fuel tax by 6 cents, and change the alcoholic beverage tax. It would also provide a $3,000 teacher pay raise, a $1,000 pay raise for some state employees, and restore the Earned Income Tax Credit.

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill and ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel about the "Bipartisan Oklahoma Plan" released by the House Democrats which has received no support from Republicans while time has run out for lawmakers to create a budget deal. The capital is closing for the next week while crews work on the antiquated electrical system, forcing the State Finance Secretary to tell three state health agencies to cut their budget up to $75 million each.

This Week in Oklahoma Politics returns from the summer hiatus as KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill and ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel about the call by Governor Fallin for a Special Session on September 25th after the unconstitutional ruling against the $1.50 fee per pack of cigarettes left a $215M hole in the budget, Oklahoma's junior Senator shows support for DACA after an announcement from President Trump to end the program and Congressman Jim Bridenstine gets bipartisan criticism over his appointment to head NASA.

Emily Wendler / KOSU

The promise of a teacher pay raise seemed real this year, like lawmakers were actually going to get it done. But, they didn’t. And so, once again, some teachers are packing their bags in search of more money elsewhere. However, one teacher is asking them to stay in Oklahoma, and keep fighting.

This year’s legislative session began with high hopes of a teacher pay raise.

Governor Mary Fallin stressed the need for one in her February State of the State speech, and lawmakers put multiple pay raise plans on the table.

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republlican Political Consultant Neva Hill and ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel about how lawmakers did in the 2017 legislative session as they adjourned just before time ended last Friday, Governor Fallin gave her stamp of approval on the $6.8M budget for the next fiscal year, but the session ended without the passage of some of her issues on criminal justice reform which she promised during her State of the State.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Governor Mary Fallin has signed a $6.8 billion budget bill for the fiscal year that starts July 1st.

In a statement, Fallin says Senate Bill 860 closes an $878 million shortfall, protects core services, and keeps the state government from shutting down.

The bill cuts most state agency budgets by about five percent.

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