- Associated Press - Sunday, January 8, 2017

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - More than 500 Oklahoma state employees received pay raises last year despite the state facing a $1.3 billion budget shortfall.

Information obtained by The Oklahoman (https://bit.ly/2iREkak ) from the state Office of Management and Enterprise shows 554 raises totaling just more than $5 million.

They include $5,000 to an equipment operator at the Transportation Department to bring the salary to $25,000 and $5,000 to a Wildlife Conservation Department procurement officer to bring the salary to $33,600. Other raises include $17,000 to Oklahoma Health Department Dr. Kristy Bradley to raise her pay to $130,000 and $10,000 to Grand River Dam Authority general manager Tim Brown to bring his pay to $200,000.

OMES spokeswoman Shelley Zumwalt said the reasons for the raises include people taking on additional duties and those whose salary wasn’t competitive with similar positions.

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