House Special Investigation Committee Issues First Subpoenas

The first subpoenas from the House Special Investigation Committee were delivered Thursday. They were served to acting director of the State Department of Health Preston Doerflinger, Office of Management and Enterprise Services acting director Denise Northrup and Governor Fallin’s chief of staff Chris Benge. Other subpoenas are expected to be issued in the coming days.

The Committee is looking into the financial mismanagement of the Health Department which led to a $30 million debt. Several high ranking members of the Health Department, including Commissioner Terry Cline, have resigned when the mismanagement came to light.

Rep. Josh Cockroft is the chairman of the Investigation Committee.

“The mismanagement of more than $30 million in taxpayer dollars is incredibly frustrating for citizens and the members of the Oklahoma House of Representatives,” said Cockroft. “It is inexcusable. Our constituents want answers, and we intend to find out how and why this happened. This is not a criminal investigation. Those are being handled by our law enforcement entities. But the Legislature has the sole authority and responsibility to appropriate taxpayer dollars, and we intend to make sure that is being done according to the law and for the intended purposes that those funds were appropriated.”

Fallin issued a statement when her office received the subpoena for Benge.

“Since my office has just received this subpoena, we need time to properly review and respond to it. We further need to determine that providing the relevant information requested does not interfere with the investigations by the attorney general and the state auditor and inspector,” said Fallin.

“As I stated on October 30, my office has enlisted the help of the fiscal staff of the Office of Management and Enterprise Services, the state attorney general’s office and the office of the state auditor and inspector to look into the matter to immediately investigate and bring forth clarity to the situation and offer solutions to ensure proper fiscal management of the Oklahoma State Department of Health. Legislative leaders have been briefed about the situation.”

Committee meetings are set for the week of December 18.

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  1. Bob, 01 December, 2017

    But Congress has no problem with the $17 million paid out to victims of Congress’ sexual abuse? Figures.

  2. mikes1voice, 01 December, 2017

    Appreciate what you are trying to say, Bob. However, this is two different levels on government. The Oklahoma House has nothing to do with Congressional dealings.


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