Claremore Daily Progress

Our View

March 3, 2014

The good and bad news about agency consolidation


Under the guise of saving the state $4 million, Gov. Mary Fallin has set in motion an effort to consolidate several agencies into one, including the Will Rogers Memorial Museum and J. M. Davis Arms and Historical Museum.
She announced her intentions during her State of the State address. She wants to fold the Oklahoma Arts Council, Oklahoma Historical Society,  Oklahoma Scenic Rivers Commission with the Will Rogers and J. M. Davis Museums into the Tourism Department.
She says it will save $4 million or 15 percent.  In the meantime, she plans to cut the Tourism Department by 15 percent too.
On Thursday, HB 3028 — introduced by Rep. Jason Murphey (R), Guthrie — was approved by the House Government Modernization Committee on a 6-5 vote.
Murphey’s bill would create the new Department of Tourism, History and Cultural Affairs. 
It would consist of the Oklahoma Historical Society, the Oklahoma Arts Council and the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department.
This looks to be the framework of Fallin’s consolidation desire with the exclusion of the Will Rogers and J. M. Davis Museums.
That’s good and not so good.
Murphey said he was pleased with the committee’s vote, which he is a member. He wants to keep the bill alive so his fellow legislators will continue to consider agency consolidation.
Voting for the bill were Reps. David Brumbaugh (R), Dan Fisher (R), Elise Hall (R), Jason Smalley (R), Mike Turner (R) and Murphey (R). Voting against the bill were Rep. David Derby (R), Joe Dorman (D), Richard Morrissette (D), Ken Walker (R) and Justin Wood (R).
Murphey can be reached at 2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Room 437 Oklahoma City, OK 73105 or by telephone at (800) 522-8502. His email address is
 It’s good that Will Rogers and J. M. Davis are not included in Murphey’s bill. That is due to the hard work of Rep. Marty Quinn and Sen. Sean Burrage. And the hundreds of museum supporters who have voiced their disagreement with Gov. Fallin’s plan.

Text Only
Our View
  • randyc3-28-12web.jpg Primary election reflections

    As I was driving home from Claremore late Tuesday night, I heard the Eagles’ classic — “I’ve got a peaceful easy feeling....”  — playing on the radio.

    July 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • BAILEYDABNEY8-2009.tif DA primary election crucial

    Tuesday’s Republican Primary for District Attorney of Rogers, Craig and Mayes counties is, by far, the most critical race on the ballot. The prolonged clash between the DA’s office and local law enforcement agencies has disrupted the once harmonious local justice system.

    June 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Burrage, sean.tiff Senate review by Sean Burrage

    Hailey Mathis is studying political science and history at the University of Oklahoma. She’s one of a very select group of college students each year who have the opportunity to learn about government and public service through an internship at the State Senate.  

    April 4, 2011 1 Photo

  • Inhofe-Jim-colorcmyk.jpg State, local voice is pivotal in education

    For many years at Edison High School in Tulsa, Okla., my wife, Kay, dedicated her life to teaching and mentoring young students, never knowing that in the years to come, two of our children would follow in their mother’s footsteps, building classrooms of their own and impacting the lives of so many young people.

    June 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Randy Cowling D-Day heroes are never forgotten

    Without a second thought, they answered the call to serve.

    June 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • Senate Review

    A couple of weeks ago, I shared information about the Reading Sufficiency Act (RSA), a measure approved in 2011 requiring a reading test at the end of the third-grade year to make sure each child was reading at grade-level. 

    May 12, 2014

  • GovFallin-at-RSUweb.jpg In death penalty debate, remember the victims

    Last week, the state of Oklahoma conducted the lawful execution of Clayton Lockett, a man who was convicted of first degree burglary, assault with a dangerous weapon, kidnapping, robbery by force and fear, forcible oral sodomy, rape and first degree murder.

    May 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • Veto pen

     House attention last week was focused on conference committees and on the slew of bills the governor vetoed.

    May 6, 2014

  • Kim Dabney Different not Less

    What other childhood epidemic has received so little attention? April’s Autism “Awareness” month is almost over but nothing has changed.  

    April 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Senate Review

    April 15th was the deadline for filing taxes.  I’m certain it’s no one’s favorite time of year, but here’s something that may help give a little perspective—at least as far as state taxes go.  

    April 21, 2014