State Lottery, Casinos Pump $89-Million Into Public Schools

Tuesday, September 5th 2006, 8:41 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Gamblers will contribute about $89-million to Oklahoma's public schools during the fiscal year that began July 1st.

But that's far short of what's needed to fully fund a teacher pay raise and expand full-day kindergarten.

The $3,000 teacher pay raise cost $136-million this year alone. That doesn't include a $21.7-million gap caused when legislators didn't approve money to cover related costs such as the state's share of each teacher's added Social Security taxes.

The pay raise and full-day kindergarten were Governor Brad Henry's two major initiatives for gaming revenue. Henry says he never thought gaming revenue would fully fund both programs.