| April 10, 2012

State could save thousands by not subsidizing space travel

Following is an excerpt from OCPA’s Proposed State Budget for the Fiscal Year ending June 30, 2013.

With Oklahoma government spending at an all-time high (see chart), the time has come to set priorities and to exercise spending discipline.

The Oklahoma Space Industry Development Authority (OSIDA), created in 1999, was intended to operate entirely on self-generated revenues. Despite this intent, lawmakers have given $7.8 million in taxpayer appropriations to OSIDA since its inception, including the $394,589 given to the agency for FY 2012. State-subsidized space travel is not a core function of state government. Moreover, the infrastructure of OSIDA is now used for more than just attempts at space travel, and some reports indicate that if OSIDA were freed from state control it could generate enough income to operate on its own.

The potential savings from implementing such reforms would be $394,589 annually.

Submitted each year by the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, Inc. to the taxpayers of the State of Oklahoma and their elected Officials, the OCPA “Budget Book” is carefully crafted by Fiscal Policy Director Jonathan Small to help lawmakers set priorities and exercise spending discipline while creating a state budget that respects your family budget. Offering unmatched fiscal policy analysis and recommendations, Small draws on his experiences as a former budget analyst for the Oklahoma Office of State Finance, former fiscal policy analyst and research analyst for the Oklahoma House of Representatives, and former director of government affairs for the Oklahoma Insurance Department to provide perspective on the state budget that you cannot find anywhere else.

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