FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Contact: State Rep. Scott Inman
Phone: (405) 557-7370
House Democrats Call on Republicans to Adopt the “Restoring Oklahoma” Plan
OKLAHOMA CITY – The House Democratic Caucus met today to discuss potential revenue measures for consideration should the Governor call for a special session. State Rep. and House Minority Leader Scott Inman today said a special legislative session was necessary in order to backfill the $215 million hole after the Oklahoma Supreme Court last week declared a $1.50 per pack fee on cigarettes unconstitutional. He said Democrats will stick with their original “Restoring Oklahoma” plan should the Oklahoma Legislature convene to tackle the budget issues.
“Democrats first presented a solution to these financial woes back in March, and we still believe it is the best option for Oklahoma,” said Inman, D-Del City. “Our caucus is disheartened because we fail to see a long-term strategy on the opposite side of the aisle. If there were ever a time to have a well-defined plan, it is now. The Democrats have that.”
Inman again called on Republican Leaders to discuss revenue measures and use a special session not only to fill the current budget hole but, to also set the state budget on a more stable path for the long-term.
Inman pushed back against the idea that $215 million could be filled by across-the-board cuts, saying lawmakers who pursued that option would need to “answer to their maker.”
“We won’t stand idly by while Republican lawmakers continue to slash agencies that have endured devastating blows time and time again. We should have made smart decisions while we were in session this past spring. The least we can do at this point is make wise choices now so rural hospitals won’t continue to be forced to file for bankruptcy and agencies won’t be left in the lurch,” Inman said.