Wednesday, April 2, 2014
OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today thanked the Oklahoma Senate Committee on Rules for its bipartisan support of a constitutional amendment that would allow Oklahoma school districts to pursue a one-time increase in bonding capacity to fund upgrades such as storm shelters, safe rooms and precautions against intruders. The bill passed 12-3 in the Senate Committee on Rules, with the support of both Republican and Democratic senators.
The measure now goes to the full Senate. The Oklahoma House of Representatives previously voted 65-28 to pass House Joint Resolution 1092.
“My thanks go out to the senators who supported this plan today and worked to advance it,” said Fallin. “I especially appreciate Senator Anthony Sykes for championing this issue in his legislative body.
“This resolution empowers communities to take action to better protect their children from tornadoes and other threats. It is a fiscally responsible, realistic plan that I believe will ultimately help to save lives.”
The resolution was originally authored by Rep. Mark McBride, from Moore, and Rep. Jon Echols, from Oklahoma City. Both represent areas hit hard by last May’s deadly tornadoes.
Legislative approval of HJR 1092 would put the measure on the Nov. 4 general election ballot for Oklahoma voters to consider.
What They’re Saying about Governor Fallin’s Storm Shelter Plan:
The Tulsa World
School Storm Safety Plan a Good Fit:
“Gov. Mary Fallin has found a better way to allow school districts to invest in storm shelters and school safety if they want without taking the decision-making authority away from local officials or tying up state revenue. …”
The Lawton Constitution
Shelters: Gov. Fallin’s Plan Makes Sense
“Gov. Mary Fallin is backing a good, local-option plan to help improve safety and security at public schools. …Fallin’s plan is superior to one authored by state Rep. Joe Dorman …”
“Also making the highlight reel was Fallin’s support of legislation giving school districts greater ability to finance tornado shelters or safe rooms. This solidifies a separation on this issue between her and a Democratic legislator who wants her job. He favors a statewide bond issue financed with the franchise tax. Fallin supports the better approach.”