OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Governor Kevin Stitt has recently signed or vetoed several funding bills to distribute millions of dollars given to Oklahoma through the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) and the state Rural Economic Development Loan & Grant Program (PREP).
So far during the most recent special session, Gov. Stitt has signed 19 bills and vetoed three.
- HBs 1016XX, 1017XX, 1019XX, 1022XX and SB 13XX, direct nearly $650 million for investments in infrastructure.
- HB 1011XX directs nearly $550 million to be used for expanding broadband across the state.
- HB 1018XX and SBs 16XX, 17XX, and 20XX direct over $80 million for economic and workforce development – including nearly $1 million for nursing programs, $20 million to outfit a STEM lab, Incubator, and Accelerator at the Fires Innovation Science and Technology Accelerator (FISTA), $20 million to establish an aviation academy, and $12 million to build out the Oklahoma Cyber Innovation Institute.
- HB 1013XX directs $125 million for record investments in mental health.
- SB20XX directs $26 million to the Oklahoma Health Department for implementing an electronic health record system, as well as $93.9 million for rural hospitals, early childhood development, and Community Health Centers.
- HB 1012XX directs $100 million to address the obesity and opioid epidemic and $10 million for rural telehealth.
- SB 21XX directs $6 million to treat children with autism.
- HB 1014XX directs over $2.5 million to the Department of Public Safety for mobile wellness units to address trauma in first responders.
- SB 15XX directs $42 million to support the Oklahoma National Guard and our military and veterans.
- SB 19XX directs $30 million for youth service centers across the state of Oklahoma.
“It is my hope that these one-time funds will help us move the needle in integral areas like improving crumbling infrastructure, addressing the opioid epidemic, and expanding broadband services across Oklahoma to get us closer to becoming a Top Ten state,” said Stitt.
He also vetoed HB1009XX to fund the Oklahoma Education Television Authority (OETA), HB 1015XX to “construct nine regionally-located emergency operations centers” throughout the state, and SB18XX to fund the Oklahoma Arts Council.
ARPA was signed into law by President Joe Biden in March 2021 to provide COVID-19 relief to the states.
PREP was signed into law by Governor Kevin Stitt in May 2022 as an account for various projects in rural Oklahoma.
KFOR’s Nick Camper will have more on the vetoes Thursday evening on Oklahoma’s News 4 at 4:30 and 6 p.m.