OK. Legislature faces budget challenges in 2016

Posted at 8:57 AM, Jan 31, 2016

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- The 2016 legislative session that begins Monday will prove challenging for Oklahoma lawmakers grappling with a roughly 13 percent hole in next year's budget that is likely to grow even larger.

Governor Mary Fallin and Republican legislative leaders have said they intend to target "off-the-top" funding streams earmarked for things like transportation and public schools as part of an attempt to fill the roughly $1 billion budget hole. They also plan on scaling back some of the billions of dollars in tax credits and exemptions the state offers.

Fallin will lay out her proposal to balance next year's budget and deliver her annual State of the State speech to lawmakers on Monday at the Capitol. While acknowledging difficult times ahead, Fallin says those challenges also present opportunities.

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