Legislative battle brewing over higher education bond issue

Wednesday, March 2nd 2005, 5:42 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- House Democrats are turning up the heat on their Republican counterparts to move forward on a higher education bond issue.

The Democrats have posted signs outside their offices showing how many days have passed since the state Senate unanimously approved Governor Henry's $500-million higher education bond package.

Minority Leader Jari Askins of Duncan and Representative Bill Nations of Norman urged quick action on Henry's proposal Tuesday and criticized GOP House Speaker Todd Hiett's alternative bond plan, unveiled one day before the state Senate voted on Henry's proposal.

Hiett spokesman Damon Gardenhire says the speaker's plan is scheduled to be heard by a House committee Wednesday. Gardenhire says discussions are continuing with Henry, and Republicans expect to have a good plan this year for higher ed.

Nations says Hiett's plan was offered too late to be seriously considered.

Supporters are worried that delaying the plan will result in higher costs.