Tzi-Zho Session Day 15

2014 TZI-ZHO SESSION DAY 15: For the remainder of the fiscal year 2015 budgeting process, the Fourth Osage Nation Congress will be scrutinizing budgets more closely after adopting recommendations from the Congressional appropriations committee to be careful in considering new job positions and initiatives requesting tribal money.

The appropriations committee recommendations come less than 24 hours after a Sept. 17 committee meeting discussed the status of budgets still over the FY 2015 projected revenue mark of $44 million.

During the meeting, Congressman and appropriations committee chairman John Jech said the budgets – with the 95 percent spending restriction – had a $34,000 deficit, but that figure will increase after the committee learned that eliminated positions from the Nation’s Early Learning Center budgets are required for state requirements.

At the Sept. 17 Congressional Education Committee meeting, newly hired Early Learning Center director Clair Wood said the eliminated child care worker positions (deleted from the budget before the committee meeting) are necessary to comply with Oklahoma Department of Human Services licensing requirements for child care centers.

The committee tabled action on the child care center budgets pending updated budgets that will be prepared by Wood and Executive Branch officials and presented at a later education committee meeting.

At the conclusion of the appropriations committee meeting, the members voted unanimously to send the recommendation to the Congress that the legislative body be careful in considering budgets with new employee positions and initiatives. 

Day 16 of the session starts at 10 a.m. Friday Sept. 19.