State Health Department has Budget Plan

Jan 3, 2018

 

Credit File photo

The Oklahoma State Department of Health has proposed large budget cuts through layoffs and program cuts.

The proposal would cut the department's budget by about $17.8 million, twice the amount the Legislature demanded. The plan would lay off nearly 200 employees and could end grants to child-abuse prevention programs and health centers.

Department officials acknowledged in October that the department was struggling to make payroll.

The Legislature gave the department $30 million to help stabilize the situation. But it also required the department to create a corrective plan and cut its budget by 15 percent, or $8 million, by July 2019.

The State Auditor's Office, a grand jury and federal officials are investigating the department for alleged overspending and shifting of money.