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The Shawnee News-Star
  • Breakdown of winners and losers in proposed budget

  • OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — About half of the 76 Oklahoma agencies, commissions and organizations covered by the state budget proposal unveiled Thursday will see their budgets shrink or stay the same, with education and health services getting the lion's share of additional funding. Below is a breakdown of the largest increases and some notable snubs.
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  • OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — About half of the 76 Oklahoma agencies, commissions and organizations covered by the state budget proposal unveiled Thursday will see their budgets shrink or stay the same, with education and health services getting the lion's share of additional funding. Below is a breakdown of the largest increases and some notable snubs.
     
    INCREASES:
     
    —Education: $74 million, a 3.2 percent increase from this year, much of which will cover previous mandates that weren't adequately funded. The department will also get a boost this year of $17 million to cover teacher benefits.
     
    —Career and Technology Education: $3 million, an increase of just more than 2 percent from this year's level.
     
    —State Regents of Higher Education: $33.3 million, up 3.5 percent from this year's budget.
     
    —Human Services: $44 million, a 7.5 percent jump and one of the budget's largest increases. Much will go to the court-mandated Pinnacle Plan to reform the department and to cut down some service waiting lists.
     
    —Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services: $17.4 million, a 5.6 percent raise. The boost is headed for crisis centers, criminal justice reinvestment programs and other services.
     
    —Oklahoma Health Care Authority: $40 million, a jump of 4.3 percent, to help cover people who are Medicaid-eligible but aren't enrolled.
     
    —Drought Relief Fund: $3 million newly committed to help farmers and communities.
     
    SNUBS:
     
    —Corrections: No increase, despite a request earlier this year for a $66.7 million increase. The department has said it cannot accept any more inmates without more money, but the governor has recently questioned the department's use and reporting of emergency revolving funds. The department blames a misunderstanding; a spokesman declined comment on the budget.
     
    —Public Safety: An increase of $522,000, a boost of just over one-half of 1 percent of the department's current $90 million budget. Several legislators in both parties have said throughout the session that public safety should be a priority, and a bill providing raises to highway troopers and other personnel overwhelmingly passed both chambers.
     
    —Agriculture: Loss of $1.7 million.

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