Staff and Wire Reports
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Gov. Mary Fallin has signed a bill allowing the Department of Corrections to use $5.25 million from a prison industries fund. It's the first piece of legislation Fallin has signed into law since she became the governor.
Supporters said the new law will prevent furloughs in the department.
"This bill will get the Department of Corrections the funds it needs to safely operate our prisons and prevent additional furloughs. I remain absolutely committed to public safety and I'm glad the department and the legislature were able to work together with our office to reach this solution," Fallin said.
Oklahoma's prison population has exploded, putting a strain on the Department of Corrections' budget. The state leads the nation in the number of incarcerated women, and is consistently ranked among the top five in incarceration rates for men.
The Department of Corrections consumes about 7 percent of the state's budget.