For Immediate Release: April 10, 2007
Senate Appropriations Chair Johnnie Crutchfield discusses supplemental
at the Capitol on Tuesday.
Legislative Leaders Announce Bipartisan
Agreement on Supplemental Funding
for Department of Military: $1.5 Million in Funds Expected to
Pass Senate Today
Democratic and Republican legislative leaders
in the House and Senate Tuesday announced they will immediately
pass a $1.5 million supplemental appropriation for the state's
military department to help replace aging and dilapidated National
The Senate will take up the supplemental appropriation
later Tuesday in House Bill 1184, and the measure could be on
the governor’s desk by the end of the week.
"This is another example of how the House
and Senate are working in a true bipartisan fashion this year.
We have a very short window of time to act, and this funding
for the military department simply cannot wait," said Rep.
Chris Benge (R-Tulsa), chair of the House Appropriations and
Budget Committee. "In the continuing spirit of bipartisanship
in the Legislature, we're going to act to make sure that our
men and women in uniform get the help they need."
"We have come together again today in a bipartisan
way to provide important emergency funding in support of Oklahoma’s
National Guard troops. The men and women of the Oklahoma National
Guard continue to serve with distinction in the global war on
terror and as a Legislature we must do all we can to make sure
they have the facilities they need to be properly equipped when
they are called on to defend our freedoms," said Sen. Johnnie
Crutchfield (D-Ardmore), chair of the Senate Appropriations
"This agreement on supplemental funding to
help our Oklahoma National Guard troops is another example of
how bipartisanship is working in the Oklahoma Legislature,”
said Sen. Mike Johnson (R-Kingfisher), co-chair of the Senate
Appropriations Committee. “We anticipate that additional
announcements on other critical funding issues could be forthcoming
in the days and weeks ahead, as well.”
Last month, the governor vetoed a bipartisan general
appropriations budget for all of state government agencies and
services, but he has so far failed to indicate specific details
on an alternative plan. The governor's executive budget submitted
in February did not include the supplemental appropriation for
The Oklahoma Military Department has indicated
it needs an immediate supplemental appropriation of $1.5 million
to purchase land in west Oklahoma City and in the Broken Arrow
area as construction sites for Armed Forces Reserve Centers
(AFRC's) for both Oklahoma Army National Guard and Reserve units.
OMD officials have said the AFRC's will replace
Oklahoma's aging National Guard armories in need of substantial
repair or that are unsuited to current military functions.
The federal Base Realignment and Closure Commission
(BRAC) has made federal funds available for AFRC’s, as
long as the state furnishes land for the projects.
Without funding for the AFRC projects, OMD officials
say, the state would not have appropriate facilities to accommodate
Reserve and Guard units and equipment.
For more information contact:
Senator Morgan's Office: (405) 521-5605
Senator Coffee's Office: (405) 521-5654