Senator Mike Morgan
President Pro Tempore
Senate District 21
Payne, Logan and Lincoln Counties
For Immediate Release: May 27,
Senate President Pro Tem Mike Morgan addresses reporters
following Sine Die along with
other members of the Democratic caucus.
Senate Democrats Praise Session’s Accomplishments
Oklahoma is a better place to live today because
of the efforts of Senate Democrats in the First Session of the 50th
Oklahoma Legislature, President Pro Tempore Mike Morgan said moments
after the session concluded at 4:22 p.m.
“Senate Democrats fought hard for working families and made
sure any legislation passed out of this body that would help make
tomorrow better for our children,” said Morgan, D-Stillwater.
Morgan said it would be easy to call 2005 the “Education
Session” but added the list of accomplishments is so long
that such a characterization might be inadequate.
“We have done great things for education, beginning with
record funding at all levels and including greater accountability
for both students and educators. We have begun our four-year journey
to raise teachers’ salaries to the regional average and have
made a record investment in our college and university campuses,”
But education was hardly the only winner in the session, the Senate
Session accomplishments include a significant tax cut for working
families and an historic investment in road and bridge maintenance.
Healthcare measures promoted by Governor Brad Henry and Senate
Democrats also became law along with legislation that will create
greater financial security for members of the Oklahoma Army and
Air National Guard.
Morgan was joined at his post session press conference by Majority
Leader Ted Fisher, Appropriations Chairman Johnnie Crutchfield and
other members of the Senate Democratic Caucus.
Many of the lawmakers addressed specific session accomplishments.
“I’m very proud of the budget we have crafted. We
have appropriated more than $6 billion and at the same time will
make a record deposit the Rainy Day Fund. It’s the first time
since the Rainy Day Fund was created that when money was available
in the fund that we didn’t touch it,” said Crutchfield,
D-Ardmore. “And, on top of that, we have passed the largest
tax cut package in state history.”
Assistant Majority Leader Jay Paul Gumm, chairman of the Senate
Finance Committee, addressed the tax cuts.
“The package of targeted tax cuts we have enacted will strengthen
Oklahoma families, boost small businesses, and give every Oklahoma
community an opportunity to fulfill its promise,” said Assistant
Majority Leader Jay Paul Gumm , D-Durant. “It will put money
back in the pockets of working families and make Oklahoma a more
attractive retirement destination.”
Majority Caucus Chairman Kenneth Corn noted the road and bridge
maintenance plan passed by lawmakers as a major accomplishment of
“We’ve made an historic investment in road and bridge
maintenance in our state. Oklahomans will begin seeing the results
of this bill before the end of this year. In the coming decade,
hundreds of bridges will be replaced and repaired while thousands
of miles of highways will be resurfaced,” said Corn, D-Poteau.
Majority floor leader Ted Fisher said one of the most important
accomplishments of the session is that lawmakers have made these
investments while making certain that Oklahoma maintains its ability
to fund public education, health care, job creation and the services
our state’s most vulnerable citizens count on every day.
“We have struck a critical balance that will make tomorrow
better for our children,” Fisher said.
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