What Services Will Be Cut in 2016?

If next year’s budget is as bad as leaders are saying, maybe it’s time to look at raising revenue. Some forecasters say that the state’s 2016 budget shortfall could be around one billion dollars. State agencies have had their budgets slashed the past several year and have reduced services and overhead to meet the budget. There is no more room to “cut” many state agencies unless critical services are eliminated.
It may be that Oklahoma is past the point of reducing services and to the point of eliminating services…so, lawmakers may have a tough choice to make. Does Oklahoma stop services to the elderly, the disabled, vulnerable children? Do we stop  repairing roads and bridges? Do we cease services to veterans or close state parks that bring people and dollars to towns across Oklahoma? Do we reduce the number of troopers and other law enforcement officials  who watch our streets and highways? Do we stop incarcerating violent offenders because we can’t pay for the correctional centers or stop monitoring offenders who are on parole? Do we stop inspecting restaurants or other businesses that impact our lives?

These are just some of the scenarios that lawmakers must consider if the budget remains bleak and they choose not to find a way to increase funds in the state coffers. It is time for all state employees and retirees to find their state senator and representative and have this conversation on a face-to-face basis. Get to know your lawmakers and have this discussion soon. Ask them the tough questions, they work for you.

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