Oklahoma Lawmakers revived a bill authorizing a $70 million state road bond issue last week just 24 hours after the proposal was narrowly defeated.
The bond bill was part of Gov. Mary Fallin’s budget-balancing plan to transfer into the general fund $100 million from Oklahoma Department of Transportation’s eight-year road and bridge maintenance plan and replace it with bond proceeds in fiscal 2012.
The Senate voted 23-21 on May 17 to pass the bill, short of the 25 votes needed to move a bill along.
Several Republican senators who did not like the idea of borrowing money to balance the budget joined with Democratic senators to oppose the measure.
On May 18, the road bond bill passed on a 29-18 vote.
The bond bill passed in the House with 51 votes in favor, the minimum needed to approve legislation.
A plan to issue another $40 million of state bonds for the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum did not come to a vote in the Senate after the measure was approved by a committee.
Senate President pro tempore Brian Bingman, R-Sapulpa, said he did not bring the legislation to a vote because the proposal needed more study.
A spokesman for Fallin said she was disappointed that the bond proposal was not considered by the Senate, but said the state is looking for other options to complete the partially constructed facility in Oklahoma City.
The Legislature did approve a $40 million bond issue to build a new headquarters for the state veterans affairs department and $25 million of bonds to build a new laboratory building for the state medical examiner.