Oklahoma leaders convening for State Budget Summit, January 16

January 8th, 2014
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 8, 2014

CONTACT: David Blatt, (918) 794-3944, dblatt@okpolicy.org

As Oklahoma grapples with the possibility of another budget shortfall, top state and national experts will gather at a public event to discuss the state’s finances. On Thursday, January 16, Oklahoma Policy Institute is convening a State Budget Summit at the Oklahoma History Center.

The event will begin with a presentation on the nuts and bolts of Oklahoma’s budget and taxes by Oklahoma Policy Institute Executive Director David Blatt. A bipartisan panel of experts will then discuss what lies ahead for Oklahoma. The panel includes legislators, top administration officials, and other community leaders. Among the issues they are expected to discuss include education funding, state employee compensation, tax breaks for the oil and gas industry, and pension reforms.

“Decisions over the state budget and taxes are the most important choices our elected leaders make, but many voters can find it hard to follow,” said Blatt. “We’re hoping this event will help to demystify the process and give those in attendance a clear grasp of the critical budget and tax issues the state will face during the upcoming legislative session.”

During lunch, keynote speaker William Hoagland will discuss the national budget outlook. Hoagland is senior vice president of the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington DC. He previously served 25 years as staff in the US Senate, including as director of budget and appropriations in the office of Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN).

In the afternoon, Together Oklahoma will host an optional advocacy workshop to train concerned citizens interested in fair and adequate funding of public services.

You can find more information and purchase tickets at www.okpolicy.org/budgetsummit. Space is limited and filling fast! The registration deadline is Monday, January 13.

The cost for the full day, including the advocacy workshop, is $45.To apply for a scholarship, send an email to info@okpolicy.org with a brief statement explaining your need. Contact Oklahoma Policy Institute at (918) 794-3944 if you have questions or need special accommodation.