Transparency envy

As we’ve said, we are very pleased by Governor Henry’s swift action in launching a state website to provide information on the federal stimulus bill (formally known as the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, or ARRA), as it applies to Oklahoma. If you surf through the site, you’ll find various pieces of information about the multiple funding streams available to the state and Oklahoma’s expected share of these funds. What you won’t find, however, is a single document pulling together information on all the programs, grants, and funding streams that may come Oklahoma’s way as a result of ARRA.

A few states are leading the way in creating just such a report. Minnesota’s Management and Budget Commissioner has released a 179 page document (PDF) where each state agency lays out what federal funds Minnesota will or could receive through the federal stimulus – including competitive grants they plan to apply for. California’s Legislative Budget Office has also put out a detailed overview of ARRA which emphasizes the impact that various funding streams will have on the state’s budget situation.

We are hopeful that something similar is in the works for Oklahoma. Governor Henry’s interagency coordinating committee is up and running, and at its first meeting, the governor assigned Cabinet secretaries and agency directors with preparing written reports on opportunities and challenges contained in the stimulus act. This could be a first step in a similar process. In the meantime, OK Policy’s brief may be helpful for folks looking for a basic summary of the kinds and amounts of funding available to Oklahoma.


Former Executive Director David Blatt joined OK Policy in 2008 and served as its Executive Director from 2010 to 2019. He previously served as Director of Public Policy for Community Action Project of Tulsa County and as a budget analyst for the Oklahoma State Senate. He has a Ph.D. in political science from Cornell University and a B.A. from the University of Alberta. David has been selected as Political Scientist of the Year by the Oklahoma Political Science Association, Local Social Justice Champion by the Dan Allen Center for Social Justice, and Public Citizen of the Year by the National Association of Social Workers.

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