Oklahoma lawmaker sues for coronavirus relief fund records - The Jewish Voice
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Monday, September 25, 2023

Oklahoma lawmaker sues for coronavirus relief fund records

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 (AP) — An Oklahoma lawmaker has filed an Open Records Act lawsuit seeking records about expenditures from Governor’s Emergency Education Relief, or GEER, funds.

Republican Rep. Logan Phillips filed the lawsuit Tuesday against the Office of Management and Enterprise Services and said Gov. Kevin Stitt and Education Secretary Ryan Walters, also both Republicans, have not responded to his requests for the documents.

“I am seeking declarative and injunctive relief because I believe failure to provide the requested records is unlawful and the records need to be made publicly available,” Phillips said.

Stitt and OMES representatives told the Tulsa World that Phillips failed to attend scheduled meetings to see the documents.

A U.S. Department of Education audit in July sharply criticized state officials for lack of oversight and accountability in how they used nearly $40 million in coronavirus relief funds intended for education.

The audit recommended the state return nearly $653,000 spent on non-educational items such as televisions and Xbox gaming systems and audit another $5.4 million for possible refund of misspent funds.

The state blamed the Florida-based contractor hired to administer the programs and sued the company for how it distributed the funds.

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