The Legislative Office of Fiscal Transparency (LOFT), created by SB 1 in 2019, is a division within the Legislative Service Bureau intended to provide greater legislative oversight of state agency budgets. Duties of the Office include gathering information related to proposed agency budgets; evaluating the extent to which each agency fulfills its statutory responsibilities; determining the amount of revenue available to the agency from various sources; comparing current budget information to prior agency requests; and conducting an investigation of any agency as needed to fulfill its responsibilities. The Office is also authorized to conduct performance evaluations and independent comprehensive performance audits.
A 14-member bipartisan legislative committee appointed by the Speaker and the President Pro Tempore and co-chaired by the House and Senate Appropriations committee chairs oversees LOFT’s operations. The committee selected Mike Jackson, a former Speaker Pro Tempore of the House of Representatives, as LOFT’s Executive Director in June 2020 and approved LOFT’s first annual workplan in August 2020. LOFT released its first report in February 2021; by December 2021 it had completed eleven reports on subjects that included the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust, the Developmental Disabilities Services Waiting List, Oklahoma Promise scholarship program, and the state’s use of Covid relief funds. In 2022, its reports covered subjects including an evaluation of state parks, state funding for K-12 education, and the medical marijuana industry.
The Legislative Service Bureau was appropriated $1.7 million to fund LOFT in FY 2020.