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OKLAHOMA CITY — As a ransomware cyberattack created worldwide chaos, State of Oklahoma agencies with their information technology unified under the IT umbrella managed by the Office of Management and Enterprise Services were protected and reported no disruptions in service.

Unification allows agencies to have the updated resources of Oklahoma CyberCommand that quickly detect and respond to ransomware attacks.

“CyberCommand has a specific set of technical and response capabilities to identify and respond to cyberattacks,” said Oklahoma CyberCommand Director Mark Gower. “During the latest global incident, we had zero reports of encryptions and no indicators of a compromised system due to this ransomware.”

Uncertainty remains for this and next fiscal year

OKLAHOMA CITY — General Revenue Fund collections in April missed the official monthly estimate by 12.9 percent and were 4.4 percent below the estimate for the fiscal year, leading to more uncertainty regarding deeper reductions to state agencies as the Legislature stalls with budget proposals.

“The uncertainty that one-time revenue sources have left us with make it difficult to build a budget,” said Secretary of Finance, Administration and Information Technology Preston L. Doerflinger.

OKLAHOMA CITY — Strong storms toppled trees and knocked out power at the Capitol this weekend but didn’t shut down the security of and access to important data housed with the Office of Management and Enterprise Services at its Information Services Data Center.

Thanks to a plan that includes using up to four 1,450-horsepower generators cranking out 1,000 kilowatts of power, the power remained on at the Data Center and the data flowing through servers connected with more than 100 state agencies remained safe and accessible.

“This weekend’s storms demonstrated another success of IT consolidation, keeping the state online during a power outage,” said Secretary of Finance, Administration and Information Technology Preston L. Doerflinger, who serves as director of OMES.

Borrowing necessary to make monthly agency allocations

OKLAHOMA CITY — General Revenue Fund (GRF) collections in March missed the official monthly estimate by 9 percent and are 2.8 percent below the estimate for the first three quarters of the fiscal year. Total GRF collections of $352.1 million in March will be short of the amount needed to make agency monthly allocations. About $31 million will need to be borrowed from other funds so agencies will receive their allotments.

“We’ve been forced to do this several times this fiscal year to avoid deeper cuts to agencies and keep government operating,” said Secretary of Finance, Administration and Information Technology Preston L. Doerflinger. “We will be looking to April collections and other upcoming months to make up the difference and reconcile the borrowed funds as we are statutorily and constitutionally required to do.”

Website becomes more transparent and accessible

OKLAHOMA CITY — The State of Oklahoma officially launched today the new OKStateStat.ok.gov website, which looks beyond the numbers to align state dollars with Oklahoma’s priorities.

“OKStateStat.ok.gov is a tremendous tool for Oklahomans to hold us in state government accountable for performance in all areas of government,” said Governor Mary Fallin. “We’ve set the bar high on our goals, and we will be working hard to attain them. This website will help hold ourselves accountable as a state government. Policymakers and the public can visit OKStateStat.ok.gov to see where we need to go as a state and what measurements will determine our success in getting there.”

Number high after change in scholarship fund payment

OKLAHOMA CITY — A change in the payment date for a higher education scholarship fund has caused total General Revenue Fund receipts to appear artificially higher than expected at 8.3 percent above the estimate for February as corporate income tax collections remain unpredictable.

A change in the final $15.4 million payment of personal income tax collections from February to March to fund the Oklahoma’s Promise scholarship fund was made because of cash-flow concerns, said Secretary of Finance, Administration and Information Technology Preston L. Doerflinger.

Standard & Poor’s Global Ratings has lowered Oklahoma’s various debt ratings one notch due to sustained weak revenue collections. S&P’s report can be viewed here https://go.usa.gov/xX3Dh.

"This report highlights several things that we've been saying for some time now," said Secretary of Finance, Administration and Information Technology Preston L. Doerflinger. "We need to fix the structural budget deficit and our revenue problem."

S&P lowered general obligation bonds and appropriation debt backed by the state’s credit enhancement reserve fund one notch from AA+ to AA and the state’s appropriation debt from AA to AA-. S&P also assigned its AA- rating to the Capitol Restoration Project bonds.

State CIO comments on unification importance at House committee

OKLAHOMA CITY — State agencies are more efficient and better protected when information technology is unified under one umbrella, state Chief Information Officer Bo Reese told legislators today.

“There really are no bounds to what we can do when we have unified agencies willing to collaborate,” Reese told the House Government Modernization Committee.

Unification, legislatively mandated by HB 1304 in 2011, partners agencies with the Office of Management and Enterprise Services to streamline and consolidate IT efforts. Reese also responded to questions regarding legislative efforts this year to exempt agencies from unification by saying such action would in the long run cost Oklahoma money and risk the security of citizens’ data.

Fiscal year collections nearly 3% below estimate

OKLAHOMA CITY — General Revenue Fund (GRF) collections in January missed the official monthly estimate by 3.4 percent and were 2.8 percent below the estimate for the first seven months of the fiscal year as sales tax receipts fell below projections and corporate income tax collections continued to show their volatility.

Although gross collections showed a slight improvement in January, as reported earlier this month by the State Treasurer, collections to the GRF still fell below the estimate after rebates, refunds and mandatory apportionments. Despite January historically being a good month for collections, GRF receipts nevertheless fell short this year.

Caution needed as tax collections continue slide

OKLAHOMA CITY — General Revenue Fund (GRF) collections in December missed the official monthly estimate by 12.3 percent and are 2.7 percent below the estimate for the first six months of the fiscal year as most major tax categories lagged behind projections.

“The news is not as good as we might have hoped coming out of the holiday season,” said Secretary of Finance, Administration and Information Technology Preston L. Doerflinger. “This will be a challenging time as we face a nearly $900 million budget hole and a necessity to find more recurring revenue sources. As I’ve said many times, we’re not going to cut our way out of this situation.”

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Team

Caden Cleveland

Caden Cleveland

Director of Legislative and Public Affairs

As director of Legislative and Public Affairs, Caden Cleveland works closely with OMES Chief of Staff Dana Webb and oversees the Public Affairs team. He serves as the spokesperson for the agency and collaborates with all other OMES divisions to communicate with the public and promote OMES. Cleveland, who is a native Oklahoman, earned a Master of Business Administration from Oklahoma Christian University and worked for the Oklahoma Senate before joining OMES. He lives with his wife, Jessica, and their goldendoodle, Liberty.

Denise White

Denise White

Communications Manager

As publications manager for OMES Public Affairs, Denise White’s mantra is that we are all in this together – it is in partnership with one another that our success is guaranteed. And to that end, she shares this sentiment with Maya Angelou: "My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to so do with some passion, some compassion, some humor and some style."

Jake Lowrey

Jake Lowrey

eGov Manager

A member of the original OMES Communications Department, Jake Lowrey manages content on the agency website, oversees GovDelivery communications system for the state and supervises the team responsible for accessibility of agency documents. Regardless of rumors to the contrary, he is a member of the human race and not an alien from outer space.

Bonnie Campo

Public Information Manager

 

Bonnie Campo is the public information manager at OMES. She spent close to 10 years in the broadcast news industry before joining the Public Affairs team in November of 2020. When she is not working, Bonnie is spending time with family and friends, or on a hiking trail. Please contact her for media related requests. 

Amy Southall

Benefits Communications Specialist

Amy Southall has been with OMES Public Affairs since 2016 and with the State of Oklahoma since 2001, with nearly 15 of those years spent with the OMES Employees Group Insurance Division. As a benefits communications specialist for the Public Affairs communications team, Amy makes your job in communicating with internal and external customers easier. In addition to copy editing and contributing written content, she also remediates agencywide material for website accessibility.

Ben Bigler

Graphic Designer

Ben Bigler's goal is to transform information and concepts into images and publication designs that are appealing, easy to understand and, occasionally, entertaining. Ben is always on the lookout for new ideas and his more than three decades as a photojournalist, page designer and informational graphic artist give him tools to help your audience see what you want to say. When not in front of a computer, Ben can usually be found in the garden, in the kitchen or on a mountain trail.

Brian Altenhofel

Brian Altenhofel

UI/UX Designer

Brian Altenhofel is an experienced web developer and has been with OMES Public Affairs since 2018. Brian enjoys long days writing code and solving difficult problems while using a mechanical keyboard and a trackball. Hobbies include hunting, fishing, long nights in Azeroth and watching all forms of auto racing.

Brian Lundmark

Brian Lundmark

Visual and Graphic Arts Specialist

Brian Lundmark wanted to be a cartoonist but settled for being an Emmy award winner, a world famous dancer and a YouTube sensation. Now he spends his time creating beautiful graphics and videos for the state of Oklahoma and helping your projects be as awesome as you are.

Brittany Coley-Roberts

Brittany Coley-Roberts

Public Record Coordinator

Brittany Coley-Roberts developed and implemented a streamlined OMES open records request process online. Her history as an executive administrative assistant, employee training manager and experience with a variety of software and technical assistant roles helps her be a team player who is willing to contribute to this division in a variety of ways. She has taken significant initiative with OMES’ social media presence and acts as one of two lead administrators on OMES social channels.

Christa Bolain

Christa Bolain

Copy Editor

Christa Bolain coordinates and creates original content for all OMES social media platforms, with an emphasis on written and visual communication. She assists with the research, writing, editing and distribution of OMES internal and external publications for grammar, spelling, consistency and OMES branding compliance.

Christa earned her B.A. in professional writing with special distinction from the University of Oklahoma and is a lifetime member of the Kappa Tau Alpha Honor Society for excellence in journalism and mass communication.

Debra Baker

Debra Baker

Benefits Communications Specialist

As a communication specialist and web administrator, Debra Baker is part of a team focused on making information accurate, clear and easy to understand prior to distribution. Her role involves working with printed and electronic publications along with maintaining the information on the OMES website. She acts as the point of contact for different divisions on many projects and has 30 years’ experience as a state employee.

Jessalyn Johnson

Jessalyn Johnson

Graphic Designer

Jessalyn Johnson's work is focused on creating graphics and publications that clearly communicate complex information in simple and dynamic ways. Her 15+ years of experience in branding, apparel, large format, packaging and print design allow her to do this effectively. Jessa is passionate about improving her skills. She welcomes constructive criticism and devotes herself daily to becoming a better person, designer and communicator. She also enjoys oil painting, traveling, playing golf, and spending time with her girlfriend and two adopted children.

Kory Oswald

Kory Oswald

Copy Editor

Kory Oswald is an award-winning journalist and professional communicator with a deep understanding of multimedia, content creation, news publication and propagation. He is experienced in broadcast and print news, starting as a reporter then digital media director, managing editor, editor-in-chief and eventually as a publisher. Now he bring his experience to OMES Public Affairs. He serves as a copy editor for internal and external communications, and contributes to video and audio projects like the Get Stuff Done Podcast, OMES Employees Group Insurance Division videos and A Seat at the Table podcast.