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$7M Being Spent To Remodel Oklahoma State Capitol

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Workers are tearing down walls and opening up ceilings to create more office space, more committee meeting space for both the House and Senate. Workers are tearing down walls and opening up ceilings to create more office space, more committee meeting space for both the House and Senate.
OKLAHOMA CITY -

Oklahoma legislators are spending $7 million to remodel or completely overhaul offices at the Capitol. But some legislators say the project is wasteful and the state has more pressing needs.

Workers are tearing down walls and opening up ceilings to create more office space, more committee meeting space for both the House and Senate.

Areas on three floors including the old Supreme Court chambers are being gutted.

Senate Appropriations chair Clark Jolley took us behind the scenes, showing us how, over the years, different finishes had been layered on top of each other, rather than trying to maintain the building's original beauty.

The $7 million cost of the renovation work is coming out of the general fund budget. Jolley says the improvements have been needed for years, and are a one-time expense.

But critics say the timing is wrong, the money could be better spent.

Now, it's important to note that this, technically, is not part of the big Capitol renovation. That will begin after a special committee decides how to spend the $120 million the state has allocated for Capitol repairs.

The committee meets for the first time on Tuesday.

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