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Okla. Lawmakers Give Governor Power Over Ed. Board (Apr 06, 2011)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Republican Gov. Mary Fallin will have control over the state board of education under a bill approved by the Legislature.

The House voted 63-35 on Wednesday, mostly along party lines, to allow the governor to replace the seven-member board after taking office. The governor would appoint one member from each of the state's five congressional districts, plus one at-large member. The state superintendent would serve as chairman of the board.

Board members currently serve staggered terms, and the current board is composed mostly of appointees of former Democratic Gov. Brad Henry. Republican lawmakers have unveiled several proposals to strip power from the board after a contentious meeting in January with newly elected Republican Superintendent Janet Barresi

Democrats who opposed the bill accused Republicans of a power grab.

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