State revenue is down which means that state agencies will be feeling a pinch. It's what happens. The liberals are blaming Republicans for tax breaks for the state's bread-and-butter industries; oil and gas. The Republicans are blaming "100 years of mismanagement" rather than taking responsibility for the fact that the mess we're in is an equal opportunity destroyer and that politicians of every breed are to blame. Republicans and Democrats alike are culpable for the place we're in right now because for both parties, the only solution is to raise taxes.
Liberals want to raise taxes on the rich.
Conservatives want to raise taxes on the poor.
The bovine fecal matter stacks up so high in the Oklahoma legislature that you need wings to rise above it and largely, it's the career politicians who are left holding the bag. Their greed and desire for power has overruled any common sense they may have possessed at a time in the past and it will never return.
With all of that taken into consideration, I have some budgetary solutions that will work to more effectively use state tax dollars and to rein in the madness under the methane gas-filled dome. These solutions are going to piss off some people and those are the people we should vote out of office with impunity. They are the problem, not the solution.
1. Reduce Legislative Pay: Pay for all state legislators and their assistants, envoys, project managers and the like should all be cut in half. If you don't think they are overpaid, consider these little positions for the State Senate alone:
Randy Dowell Chief of Staff $128,947 Been there since 1997
Jonathon Nichols Legal Council $120,138 Been there since 2000
Caroline Dennis Dir. of Ops $120,128 Been there since 1982
Trait Thompson Capital Proj. Mgr. $86,957.
Those are JUST a few. You see very familiar names when you go through the list of Senate payroll recipients like; Trait Thompson, Jonathan Nichols, Sharon Veazey, Claire Mcatee, or Nancy Pellow. You got to see this madness. I mean it. The State Senate and staff should take a 50% pay cut and the position should remain at that specific salary. Period. It's amazing how much money is being slung around to and for our elected legislators.
Here are more for you to review. Bring a barf bag.
Corporation Commission (Note the total salary number.)
Boll Weevil Eradication Organization (Yes, it really exists.)
Department of Corrections (Your butt will pucker.)
Department of Tourism (The salaries are completely out of control here.)
2. County Official Pay Reduction: Like the legislators and their staff, County elected officials should receive pay that is commensurate to the average median income of their respective counties. Makes sense, doesn't it? Their pay should NOT be based on how much money is in the county, but rather the average income of the citizens therein. This alone will save millions of dollars a year and when you take into consideration the number of staff members they have, when the same formula is applied, the savings to the taxpayers within that county will be astronomical.
3. Statewide Elected Officials: This is really a no-brainer. Take the average median income of the state of Oklahoma and that will be their base pay. They would be entitled to travel pay when on state business throughout the state, but beyond that, their pay should be capped as should their staff members'.
You can see how these three suggestions/solutions would create a huge problem from some elected officials so I implore you to ask your elected officials whether or not they would support a proposal such as what I have here. If they say no, they are NOT citizen/legislators but rather are bottom-feeding blood-suckers.
Spread the word. People need to know.