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Stitt and the budget

Stitt and the budget

The Oklahoman
by THE OKLAHOMAN EDITORIAL BOARD
Updated: Tue, February 5, 2019 1:48 AM

Most Republican candidates campaign as fiscal conservatives. Gov. Kevin Stitt may break the mold by also governing as one.

That’s one takeaway from Stitt’s proposed state budget and comments in his State of the State address Monday. While the new governor called for targeted spending increases, most notably a $1,200 raise for teachers and money for prison-diversion programs, many agencies would have standstill budgets under Stitt’s proposal. Even more notably, he calls for setting aside up to $250 million of the anticipated $610 million in surplus money available to policymakers.

“Being conservative with our budget surplus today will protect Oklahoma from having to cut core services in the future,” Stitt said, and he’s right. The sizable budget shortfalls of recent years were due in part to a crash in oil prices, but also owed much to past Legislatures’ profligacy during boom times. The tendency of politicians to spend every dollar in sight doesn’t serve taxpayers well in the long run... FULL ARTICLE

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