Oklahoma ranks 21st in per-capita federal spending - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - KOTV.com |

Oklahoma ranks 21st in per-capita federal spending

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ Oklahoma ranks No. 21 nationally, just behind Tennessee and ahead of New York, in the amount of per-capita federal spending in the state, according to the U.S. Census Bureau's Consolidated Federal Funds Report.

The report, released Wednesday, shows Uncle Sam spent nearly $25.3 billion last year in Oklahoma, roughly $7,192 for each man, woman and child.

On the other hand, Oklahomans paid $18.2 billion in federal taxes after refunds in 2003, Internal Revenue Service records show.

That means federal spending in the state topped taxes paid by about $7.1 billion, which represents just a fraction of the total $2.1 trillion in federal domestic spending last year.

The Department of Defense spent nearly $4 billion in Oklahoma.

``It's the military base spending that has a big impact in the state,'' said Robert Dauffenbach, associate dean for research at the University of Oklahoma's Price College of Business.

The spending for Tinker Air Force Base and other installations in Oklahoma affected other facets of the state's economy, said Dauffenbach, who is also director for the OU Center for Economic and Management Research.

``Because those facilities are here, spending is a whole lot higher, you have multiplier effects on that spending,'' Dauffenbach said. ``It acts like an export industry because it's dollars coming into the state.''

Much of the spending was for federal wages and salary paid in Oklahoma, about $3.4 billion. Oklahoma ranked eighth in per-capita federal spending on wages and salary.

While military spending accounted for a large chunk, it was the financing of retirement and disability benefits that added up to the most spending in Oklahoma. About $8.8 billion was spent on such services in the state.

Oklahoma has about 429,000 people _ about 13 percent of the state's population _ older than 65. That's about 22,000 more retirement-age people than if the state was at the national average.

Oklahoma ranked ninth in the amount of federal funds received per-capita for retirement and disability programs.
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