OKLAHOMA CITY — As Oklahoma ranks among the worst states for most health outcomes, the Oklahoma State Department of Health is aiming to reduce its budget by 1.5% next year.

In a Monday budget hearing at the state Capitol, Oklahoma Commissioner of Health Gary Cox asked legislators for a $4.5 million reduction in funds appropriated to the department, a move that surprised and confused lawmakers.

State agencies submit annual budget requests that detail their anticipated needs for the upcoming year. The governor uses budget requests to help craft his proposed budget and the requests help legislators determine how best to allocate state funding.


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