Oklahoma Senate gives final approval to $8.1B in spending

Oklahoma Senate gives final approval to $8.1B in spending

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Oklahoma Senate has given final approval to a bill that appropriates $8.1 billion to various state agencies for the fiscal year beginning July 1, including a 5% boost for public schools that includes money for another teacher pay raise.

The general appropriations bill approved Tuesday on a 37-11 vote now heads to Gov. Kevin Stitt, who is expected to sign it.

Lawmakers had nearly $600 million in surplus revenue to spend this year and opted to put about $200 million of that into savings, a priority for Stitt.

The bill funds an average teacher pay hike of $1,220 for most public school teachers, another of Stitt’s goals.

Democrats criticized the plan for huge boosts in spending for the governor and Legislature and not doing enough for Oklahoma’s working poor.

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