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The Morning Brew: Hundreds of Oklahoma state employees get salary increases that top $5,000

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Hundreds of Oklahoma state employees get salary increases of more than $5,000

Even in the face of a budget crisis, thousands of state employees received raises of $5,000 or more, reports The Oklahoman's Rick Green. 

The hikes came as appropriations to most state agencies were cut amid a $1.3 billion budget hole created by an oil industry downturn, tax cuts and generous tax credits to industry.

Jonathan Small, president of the conservative Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, said the salary increases show government has been able to function with current revenue.

Nathan Warden, part of the Capitol renovation crew, helps clear snow from the east steps of the State Capitol building in Oklahoma City, Okla. Friday, Jan. 6, 2017.  Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman
Nathan Warden, part of the Capitol renovation crew, helps clear snow from the east steps of the State Capitol building in Oklahoma City, Okla. Friday, Jan. 6, 2017. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman

"The fact that state agencies are being able to provide needed salary increases during tough budget times is a sign that things are not as dire as people would try to say and that you can still provide core services for government without increasing taxes," Small said.

State leaders say that in order to adequately provide core services, a series of tax hikes will be on the table this legislative session, including for fuel and cigarettes. Also to be considered is an increase in the goods and services that fall under the state sales tax.

#ICYMI

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Related Photos
Nathan Warden, part of the Capitol renovation crew, helps clear snow from the east steps of the State Capitol building in Oklahoma City, Okla. Friday, Jan. 6, 2017.  Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman

Nathan Warden, part of the Capitol renovation crew, helps clear snow from the east steps of the State Capitol building in Oklahoma City, Okla. Friday, Jan. 6, 2017. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-d514848becbd2c8458c79036fa5a8f62.jpg" alt="Photo - Nathan Warden, part of the Capitol renovation crew, helps clear snow from the east steps of the State Capitol building in Oklahoma City, Okla. Friday, Jan. 6, 2017. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman " title="Nathan Warden, part of the Capitol renovation crew, helps clear snow from the east steps of the State Capitol building in Oklahoma City, Okla. Friday, Jan. 6, 2017. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman "><figcaption>Nathan Warden, part of the Capitol renovation crew, helps clear snow from the east steps of the State Capitol building in Oklahoma City, Okla. Friday, Jan. 6, 2017. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-cdb8c99478f34a8b58d2ab1482b4d7ba.jpg" alt="Photo - The Phoenix drone flies at the TDR booth during CES International, Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)" title="The Phoenix drone flies at the TDR booth during CES International, Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)"><figcaption>The Phoenix drone flies at the TDR booth during CES International, Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-4a8c495e54c377e3b0b19b4e5dcd4c67.jpg" alt="Photo - Alex Shapilsky flies the AEE Rova drone near his head at the AEE booth during CES International, Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)" title="Alex Shapilsky flies the AEE Rova drone near his head at the AEE booth during CES International, Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)"><figcaption>Alex Shapilsky flies the AEE Rova drone near his head at the AEE booth during CES International, Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-2bee9e315dcf88a8769c5bee03c7b2d3.jpg" alt="Photo - Mark Powless, with the Onondaga Tribe holds a Trail of Tears flag during the DAPL rally at the State Capitol in Oklahoma City, Monday October, 31 2016. Photo By Steve Gooch, The Oklahoman" title="Mark Powless, with the Onondaga Tribe holds a Trail of Tears flag during the DAPL rally at the State Capitol in Oklahoma City, Monday October, 31 2016. Photo By Steve Gooch, The Oklahoman"><figcaption>Mark Powless, with the Onondaga Tribe holds a Trail of Tears flag during the DAPL rally at the State Capitol in Oklahoma City, Monday October, 31 2016. Photo By Steve Gooch, The Oklahoman</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-67c19a9b71a8f92b9ad7d227d3c8bcbf.jpg" alt="Photo - Protesters chant and wave banners against the Dakota Access Pipeline, during a protest rally in downtown Oklahoma City, Okla. Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman " title="Protesters chant and wave banners against the Dakota Access Pipeline, during a protest rally in downtown Oklahoma City, Okla. Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman "><figcaption>Protesters chant and wave banners against the Dakota Access Pipeline, during a protest rally in downtown Oklahoma City, Okla. Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-21fc4a7a6bd313a4537fb592f4d47c1c.jpg" alt="Photo - Protesters chant and wave banners against the Dakota Access Pipeline, during a protest rally in downtown Oklahoma City, Okla. Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman " title="Protesters chant and wave banners against the Dakota Access Pipeline, during a protest rally in downtown Oklahoma City, Okla. Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman "><figcaption>Protesters chant and wave banners against the Dakota Access Pipeline, during a protest rally in downtown Oklahoma City, Okla. Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. Photo by Paul Hellstern, The Oklahoman </figcaption></figure>
Juliana Keeping

Juliana Keeping is on the enterprise reporting team for The Oklahoman and NewsOK.com. Keeping joined the staff of The Oklahoman in 2012. Prior to that time, she worked in the Chicago media at the SouthtownStar, winning a Peter Lisagor Award... Read more ›

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