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Gov. Fallin announces school shelter plan, budget at State of State address

OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin has opened the 2014 legislative session with the annual State of the State address Monday.

During her fourth speech, Gov. Fallin is presenting her budget to lawmakers for the upcoming year.

She announced her new plan for storm shelters in schools.

They have about $170 million less to work with this year compared to the last fiscal year.

Governor Fallin is expected to unveil her new tax cut proposal.

However, it’s likely a final plan will not be in place until later in the session.

MORE: See Gov. Fallin’s State of the State address here

BUDGET: Gov. Fallin’s 2014 Budget

However, not everyone is on board with the governor’s plan.

The Oklahoma Education Association released a statement, saying,

“Gov. Fallin’s Fiscal Year 2014 budget suggests a $50 million increase for Common Education, while reducing funding for Higher Education by $49 million. common education is slated to receive the lowest share of the state budget since 2000, down from 34.4 percent last year to just 33.8 percent this year.”

It added, “Gov. Fallin proposes a 0.25 percent cut to income taxes for the state’s richest residents, despite 39 state agencies receiving budget cuts or flat funding. The tax cuts for the rich will result in $47 million less going to fund essential state programs like schools, healthcare and public safety services next year. The governor continues to support measures like the Reading Sufficiency Act and A-F Grades for schools, despite not appropriating adequate funding to hire more teachers to reduce class sizes and provide the individualized instruction our students need to succeed.”