- Associated Press - Wednesday, November 29, 2017

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Oklahoma’s prison director wants state lawmakers to triple the agency’s budget in spite of a state budget shortfall and the possibility of another shortfall next year.

Corrections Director Joe Allbaugh said Wednesday the agency is seeking $1.53 billion next year including $813 million for two new medium-security prisons, $107 million in repairs to existing prisons and $10 million for across-the-board raises.

Allbaugh says the request is more than $1 billion more than the agency’s current $485 million budget but “represents exactly what our needs are right now.”

Gov. Mary Fallin says the agency’s needs will be reviewed in the budget process. Earlier this month, Fallin vetoed much of a bill to close a $215 million hole in the current budget and says next year’s shortfall is estimated at $600 million.

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