Governor Brad Henry Still Optimistic Of Budget Agreement
Tuesday, May 16th 2006, 4:55 AM CDT
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Governor Brad Henry says today he is confident the Legislature can adjourn on time next week. That's despite political posturing and deep differences between state Senate Democrats and state House Republicans on Henry's compromise budget plan.
The Democratic governor says his latest budget plan -- which has been embraced by Republican Speaker Todd Hiett -- is a balanced approach. But he says it has been misunderstood and is not an "end-all" proposal.
Henry predicts the final plan will include an income tax cut, which he says has been a foregone conclusion for some time.
Henry's latest budget includes a record $320-million annual cut in income and estate taxes. It was rejected by Democratic Senate President Pro Tem Mike Morgan, who called it an election-year ploy.
Still, Henry refuses to call the situation a budget impasse and says discussions are ongoing and progress is being made.