Senate panel OKs OETA asset plan
BY BARBARA HOBEROCK World Capitol Bureau
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
2/12/13 at 6:16 AM
OKLAHOMA CITY - If the Oklahoma Educational Television Authority were to cease to exist, its assets would be transferred to the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education under a measure passed by a Senate panel Monday.
Another committee passed a bill that would require the OETA to make legislative proceedings available online or on television should resources become available.
The OETA has come under fire from some lawmakers who question whether it is a core function of state government. The entity receives some legislative appropriations.
Both measures were written by Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Clark Jolley, R-Edmond.
In the event that the OETA is not reauthorized, Jolley said, his Senate Bill 867 would transfer is assets to the state regents.
"This is just a vehicle to be able to do something with it," he said.
The Senate Education Committee passed the measure 6-3. It now heads to the Senate Appropriations Committee.
The Senate Committee on General Government passed SB 429, which would authorize OETA to televise or make available via the Internet or other means the legislative session, including committee meetings.
The measure states that OETA would be authorized "to develop the Oklahoma Public Events Network (OPEN) in order to increase public access to and awareness of the operations of the Oklahoma Legislature and state government. OPEN shall be operated by the Authority in such a manner that citizens of this state will be able to view all daily sessions of the Legislature, including committee and subcommittee meetings, when it is in session, either on a television channel, on the Internet or by other means."
The bill passed 8-0 and heads to the Senate Appropriations Committee.
Daily sessions of the Legislature and committee meetings are available online through the House and Senate websites.
Original Print Headline: Committee OKs OETA asset plan
Barbara Hoberock 405-528-2465