Senate Allows Continued Existence of OETA

Apr 26, 2012

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Sesame Street and other educational programs will continue to air on Oklahoma's television network, despite concerns from some conservative Republicans who think the state should cut off funding.

The GOP-led state Senate voted 38-7 Wednesday for a measure that allows the Oklahoma Educational Television Authority, or OETA, to continue existing as a state agency until 2014. The bill now returns heads to the House.

There is growing opposition to the network, which provides free educational programming to residents across the state.

Republicans like Senator Greg Treat of Edmond question whether a statewide television network is a "core function of government."

OETA Executive Director John McCarroll says the agency received $3.8 million in state funding last year, which is about 40 percent of its overall budget.