Amy Lester, Oklahoma Impact Team
OKLAHOMA CITY -- At least one state lawmaker says Oklahoma has too many state agencies, and it's time to consolidate.
"It's just the right thing to do for the taxpayers to make it more efficient," said Rep. Jason Murphey, (R) Guthrie.
Oklahoma has more than 600 state agencies, boards and commissions. That's far more than neighboring states. Kansas has 257 and Arkansas has 192.
Murphey's writing legislation to consolidate agencies. He is specifically interested in combining agencies that provide services to state agencies. Consolidating the Department of Central Services, the Office of State Finance, Office of Personnel Management, Merit Protection Commission and the State Employee Education and Group Insurance Board into one administration department could save $10 million.
"By putting that into one stop, one shop, you the taxpayer can access those services in one location and you can reduce the cost to the taxpayer by consolidating the overhead," said Murphey.
Murphey will consider all boards, agencies and commissions when evaluating consolidation. He said this will be a priority issue next session.
"We have to put everything on the table, we have to tackle the most politically achievable first, but, we have to start from there and work our way up, eliminating those inefficiencies as quickly as possible," said Murphey.