State House budget leader wants new look at oil revenue

Thursday, January 12th 2006, 6:11 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- One of Oklahoma's top budget officers says the state's becoming more and more dependent on oil revenue to pay for public education.

Representative Chris Benge of Tulsa says increased tax collections on oil production will pump a record $189-million into common and higher education budgets this year. But Benge says that can't be matched next year.

Benge wants a reassessment of how gross production revenues is distributed among state agencies, particularly education. Currently, over 75 percent of oil production revenue in Oklahoma goes to common and higher education.

Benge says he questions whether a revenue source that's historically volatile and uncertain should be built into education budgets.