Rep. Grau says gubernatorial debate underscores bipartisan support for legislative reform

Oklahoma City — State Rep. Randy Grau said Friday (October 3) that both gubernatorial candidates in the debate at Oklahoma State University stated their interest in a change to the legislative process he advoctaed last session.

“Reforming the legislative process to hold one session devoted entirely to the budget would greatly improve how we spend Oklahoma tax dollars,” said Rep. Grau, R-Edmond. “In (Thursday’s) gubernatorial debate, both candidates agreed that it is a good idea. For that reason, I will push hard again next year for this significant reform.”

Currently, both policy changes and a budget are enacted annually. Under House Joint Resolution 1003, by Grau and state Sen. David Holt (R-Oklahoma City), one session would be devoted solely to the development of a state budget and the next year would include the passage of a budget as well as policy issues. 

The legislation was approved overwhelmingly in the Oklahoma House of Representatives by a 70-18 vote. It failed to receive a hearing in the Oklahoma Senate.

“This reform accomplishes two critical goals,” Grau said. “First, it will improve the budget process by providing more time for detailed analysis and consideration of how we spend the taxpayers’ money. Second, it will slow down the number of new laws we pass every year.”

Grau concluded, “As I talk to citizens from all over the state, there seems to be a consensus that the legislature needs to improve the budget process and pass fewer laws.”