Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

Government News

July 28, 2011

Bill to Give States Freedom to Manage Federal Highway Tax Revenues

“Washington’s addiction to spending has bankrupted the Highway Trust Fund. "

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senators Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK), John McCain (R-AZ), David Vitter (R-LA), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), John Cornyn (R-TX), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Daniel Coats (R-IN), Mike Lee (R-UT), Rob Portman (R-OH) and Representatives James Lankford (R-OK) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ) today introduced the State Transportation Flexibility Act that would allow state transportation departments to opt out of the Federal-Aid Highway and Mass Transit programs.  Instead, these states would be able to manage and spend the gas tax revenue collected within their state on transportation projects without federal mandates or restrictions.  In addition to the 14 Senators and 24 Representatives co-sponsoring this bill, it has received support from numerous national organizations and state officials including endorsements from Governor Mary Fallin (R-OK) and Oklahoma Secretary of Transportation, Gary Ridley.

“Washington’s addiction to spending has bankrupted the Highway Trust Fund.  For years, lower-priority projects like earmarks have crowded out important priorities in our states, such as repairing crumbling roads and bridges.  Instead of burdening states and micromanaging local transportation decisions from Washington, states like Oklahoma should be free to choose how their transportation dollars are spent.  I have no doubt that Oklahoma’s Transportation Director Gary Ridley will do a much better job deciding how Oklahoma’s transportation dollars are spent than bureaucrats and politicians in Washington,” said Dr. Coburn.

“This has been one of my top priorities since coming to Congress, and I’m happy to join Senator Coburn in this effort. This bill is a giant step for states by increasing transportation flexibility while improving efficiency,” said Representative Lankford. “By allowing states to opt-out of the federal bureaucracy, they will be able to take more control of their own resources. It will free Oklahoma to keep our own federal gas taxes and to fund new projects at our own discretion.”

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Government News
  • Weeding Process Continues At Capitol

    The first major deadline of the legislative session has now passed with work on House bills in the chamber completed on March 15.

    March 22, 2012

  • DHS Reforms Advance

    This week was the last one for House bills to be considered in their chamber of origin, and we took up several major issues.

    Among the most important were measures reforming the Department of Human Services.

    March 15, 2012

  • Annual GAO Report Exposes More Duplication in the Federal Budget, Less Responsibility Coming Out of Washington

    Members of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs, Chairman Joseph Lieberman (ID-CT), Ranking Member Susan Collins (R-ME), and Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) released the following statements today regarding the second annual Government Accountability Office (GAO) report identifying ongoing duplication and areas for costs savings throughout the federal government.

    February 28, 2012

  • Roberts Seeks Local Control on Meth Issue

    Legislation filed by state Rep. Sean Roberts would allow local communities to impose ordinances designed to reduce meth crime.

                House Bill 2802, by Roberts, would allow towns to decide if the meth ingredient pseudoephedrine should require a prescription.

    February 24, 2012

  • Lawmakers Focus on Meth Problem

    The challenge of combating methamphetamine was a major focus of lawmakers this week. Two significant bills were voted on in House committee. One failed, and one progressed.

    February 23, 2012

  • Coburn, Burr Unveil Plan to Save Medicare, the Seniors’ Choice Act

    Today, U.S. Senators Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) and Richard Burr (R-NC) unveiled the Seniors’ Choice Act, a legislative proposal to help America’s seniors by building a stronger, more sustainable Medicare program through immediate and longer-term reforms, many rooted in long-standing, bipartisan ideas. Non-partisan experts have warned the current Medicare program is facing insolvency due to unsustainable growth, and the Seniors’ Choice Act would fix its shortcomings so that it remains a viable option for seniors participating in the program now and for future enrollees.

    February 16, 2012

  • Fallin highlights more cuts to Oklahma income tax

    Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin provided more details of her plan to cut the personal income tax for all Oklahomans during her State of the State address to lawmakers on Monday, but had few specifics on how she plans to pay for the ambitious proposal.

    February 6, 2012

  • Lawmaker seeks spending limit on Okla. Legislature

    An Oklahoma lawmaker is pushing legislation that would place new constitutional limits on state spending.

    Republican state Rep. Elise Hall of Oklahoma City says that Oklahoma's public sector could grow too fast without more spending limits.

    January 27, 2012

  • 2011 Wastebook Dr. Coburn Releases New Report on Wasteful Government Spending in 2011:

    U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) today released a new oversight report, “Wastebook 2011” that highlights over $6.5 billion in examples of some of the most egregious ways your taxpayer dollars were wasted. This report details 100 of the countless unnecessary, duplicative and low-priority projects spread throughout the federal government. 

     

    December 20, 2011 1 Photo

  • House unveils DHS strategy

    House Speaker Kris Steele and a bipartisan group of five representatives today unveiled the first steps of a strategy to reform the Oklahoma Department of Human Services.

    The House’s aggressive, four-pronged strategy is designed to improve DHS through significant study of and potential reforms to governance structure, agency structure, personnel policy and resource allocation. The plan is in response to a shared desire between House members, agency officials and other stakeholders to improve delivery of services by DHS, particularly for children in state custody.

    October 19, 2011

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