OKLAHOMA CITY — Governor Kevin Stitt says he plans to hit the ground running, with the goal of making Oklahoma a top 10 state.
That includes everything from education and infrastructure to healthcare and government efficiency.
Kevin Stitt campaigned with a promise of "an Oklahoma turnaround."
His predecessor Mary Fallin says he's coming in at a good time, as he's aided by a rebounding state economy, low unemployment and a boom for the state's oil patch.
This follows lots of grid-lock in last year's legislative session, primarily over budget issues. However, it did end with an agreement of roughly $500 million in new taxes to fund teacher pay raises.
Stitt has been compared by some to the outgoing governor, but he says he's set himself apart by making it a goal to get rid of the red tape surrounding Oklahoma government.
"We need a business person, a fresh approach in state government that knows how to talk to CEOs and knows how to recruit businesses. I'm that guy."
Stitt chose several prominent business professionals to lead his transition team. He referred to the nine members as "Oklahoma's turnaround team." The committee ranged from a Norman attorney, to Oklahoma's labor commissioner and a long-time finance policy advisor.
Stitt's supporters say they feel optimistic that he'll be able to make changes. The new governor has already voiced support of many issues, including expanding Second Amendment rights.
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