OKLAHOMA CITY, Oklahoma (May, 24, 2019) – Governor Kevin Stitt, joined by House and Senate Republican leadership, today signed into law HB 2765, the general appropriations bill of $8.1 billion for Fiscal Year 2020 (FY’20), and SB 1076, legislation to setting aside $200 million for the state’s savings.
The FY’20 budget received overwhelming support in the House and Senate, breaking records with the state’s investments in core services while also putting Oklahoma on the path to saving more than $1 billion by the end of FY’20, the largest savings account in state history.
“Congratulations to the Legislature and leadership for their hard work this session. I am proud of the fiscally responsible budget we have signed into law,” said Gov. Stitt. “For the first time in state history, we will increase Oklahoma’s savings account, in order to protect core services in the future, without the law forcing it. For the first time in state history, we will give Oklahoma teachers a pay raise for a second year in a row. For the first time in state history, we will fully fund the Reading Sufficiency Act while also putting an additional $74 million into the funding formula for local classroom needs. For the first time in state history, we will fully fund our roads and bridges, and we will also make the largest deposit into the Quick Action closing fund, helping Oklahoma compete for new jobs. We will move the needle in criminal justice reform by investing in drug courts and diversion programs, and we will reform District Attorneys’ funding model so they are not reliant on high fines, fees and court costs that have created a debtor’s prison. We will prioritize funding for oversight, transparency and audits as well as funding to modernize the delivery of state services, making it customer-focused and cost efficient.”
“This year was capped by a terrific budget deal that makes significant investments in classroom funding, teacher pay raises, and criminal justice reforms,” said President Pro Tempore Greg Treat, R-Oklahoma City. “We also delivered on important policy fronts like constitutional carry, judicial redistricting, and workers’ compensation reforms. The totality of our work this session will bring positive, transformational changes and help make Oklahoma an even better state.”
“This is the best budget we have passed in a long time, and it is a budget that Oklahomans can be proud of,” said Speaker Charles McCall, R-Atoka. “We were able to fully fund many core services, drastically increase funding for public education, provide another teacher pay raise and another state employee pay raise, increase Medicaid provider reimbursement rates and maintain momentum in roads and bridges funding. And we put aside significant savings for the first time. I am grateful for the working relationship I have with Gov. Kevin Stitt and Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat, and I am very optimistic about the direction and future of our state.”
The FY2020 Budget summary is as follows:
For the first time in state history, Oklahoma teachers will receive a pay raise for two years in a row. For the first time, the Reading Sufficiency Act will be fully funded. With the additional $74M going to the classroom through the funding formula, public education will be funded at the highest levels in state history, exceeding the 2008 watermark of $2.5 billion.
The common education appropriation increased by $158 million, a 5.4% increase, which includes the following funding priorities:
Career and Technology Education
For the first time in state history, the Department of Transportation’s 8-year program is fully funded, and the state is repaying the county roads program $30 million so that counties can get back on track with their 5-year plan.
Agriculture and Rural Oklahoma
For the first time in state history, state employees will get a pay raise two consecutive years. Also, for the first time, Oklahoma will set aside one-time funds to bring state government services into the 21st century through digital modernization. This will make government more transparent, more cost efficient, and customer-focused.
The $10 million for Smart on Crimes programs in the Department of Mental Health sets a historic new level of funding for diversion programs to reduce recidivism rates. The $20 million additional dollars appropriated to District Attorney makes historic changes to replace the 991 and supervision fees funding DA offices.
JOBS / ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
For the first time in state history, Oklahoma will make the largest deposit into the Quick Action closing fund, helping state leaders compete for new jobs to diversify our state’s economy while the nation’s economy is booming.