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Press Releases

Showing: March, 2003

It was a measure aimed at giving consumers more privacy and it had cleared both a Senate committee and the full chamber. But when it was sent over to the House of Representatives, lobbyists for the insurance industry worked to make sure the measure would never get out of committee. Thats according to Senator Jim Reynolds, author of Senate Bill 2.

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Oklahoma State Senate Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 30 Clip For Immediate Release: March 3, 2003
Walt Helmerich, Peggy Helmerich, Sen. Ford and Mike Wimmer with painting Senator Ford Dedicates Painting of President Teddy Roosevelt Signing
Statehood Proclamation

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The full Senate has joined the House in approving a measure to let the public vote on Governor Brad Henrys education lottery proposal. Senator Angela Monson carried the measure in the upper chamber. She said the vote was consistent with others cast in the Senate over the past several years. There are many issues which are best decided by the voters and I believe this is one of them. Most importantly, were guaranteeing that if approved by the people, this will mean new money for education, explained Senator Monson, DOklahoma City. All existing funds would stay with education.

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State Senator Kathleen Wilcoxson is urging Democrat leaders to allow an immediate vote on public school funding. The Oklahoma City Republican said that without it, one of the state’s largest school districts will be forced to slash teaching jobs. According to media reports, the Moore School Board could vote tonight to cut nearly 80 teaching and counseling positions. School Boards have only until April 10th to notify teachers whether they will still have a job in the fall.

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(OKLAHOMA CITY) The Oklahoma State Senate Monday approved emergency funding solutions that will prevent Medicaid cuts for more than 139,000 Oklahomans and reduce prison guard furloughs for the remainder of the fiscal year.

Senators also approved supplemental appropriations for four other state agencies.

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State Senator Daisy Lawler is awaiting action by the House of Representatives on a measure clearing the way for inpatient hospice care throughout the state.

Senate Bill 591 has already won approval by the full Senate and is now awaiting action in the opposite chamber. The measure would authorize the Department of Health to create a licensing process and would establish set standards. The legislation would also allow regular inspections of inpatient hospice facilities.

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Senate and House Democratic leaders, Senate Republican leadership and Governor Brad Henry have agreed on emergency funding solutions that will prevent Medicaid cuts for more than 139,000 Oklahomans and reduce prison guard furloughs for the remainder of the fiscal year.

Senate President Pro Tempore Cal Hobson and House Speaker Larry Adair joined Senate Minority Leader James A. Williamson and Governor Henry in announcing plans Wednesday for a $9 million supplemental appropriation for the Department of Corrections and $7.2 million for the Oklahoma Health Care Authority.

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A senate committee has given the nod to a statewide vote on Governor Brad Henrys education lottery proposal. House Bill 2 passed in the Senate Finance Committee by an vote Tuesday morning. The measure was approved by the House of Representatives last week. Senator Angela Monson presented the measure to the Senate Finance Committee. She explained if the public approved the proposal, it would include numerous safeguards to ensure the integrity of the education lottery.

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State teachers and administrators will receive further clarification regarding their benefits if State Senator Kenneth Corn (D-Poteau) has his way. The Senator is the primary author of SB 715, which will require the district board of education to provide an itemized list of all salary and benefit allowances and deductions.

SB 715 passed the Senate floor Wednesday March 12th by a unanimous vote. It is now on its way to the House of Representatives to be heard in the respective committee.

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The State Senate has voiced its support for the thousands of Oklahomans who have already been deployed. That support came in the form of Senate Concurrent Resolution 13, co-authored by the Democrat and Republican leaders of the Senate.

We have more than 3,600 Oklahomans in the National Guard and the Reserve who have already been activated. Its important that those men and women and their families know we appreciate their sacrifice and stand united with them, said Senate Majority Leader Ted Fisher of Sapulpa.

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Oklahoma State Senate Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 30 For Immediate Release: March , 2003 Clip Senate Committee Approves Catastrophic

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A bill authored by Senator Jerry Smith, RTulsa, would require crime victims and witnesses to be notified that an offenders sentence could be commuted to a lesser sentence. Under the current law, district attorneys offices are responsible for notifying victims and witnesses of scheduled court appearances, as well as informing them of procedures and their respective rights related to a criminal trial.

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Oklahoma State Senate Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 30 For Immediate Release: March , 2003 Clip
Sen. Monson hopes to raise public
awareness about Hepatitis C Senator Monson Hopes Task Force Will Raise

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Law enforcement often refers to it as one of the fastest growing crimes in the United States; it’s estimated that over half a million Americans become victims of identify theft every year. Criminals obtain social security numbers, then open credit card or checking accounts in the victim’s name and run up thousands of dollars in debt, ruining the victim’s credit rating in the process.

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Senator Daisy Lawler has won passage for a bill expanding penalties for throwing objects off overpasses and bridges onto moving vehicles or roadways. Senator Lawler said she wrote the legislation after being contacted by a constituent who was a victim of such an attack. Duncan native Cindi Broaddus, sisterinlaw of Dr. Phil McGraw of the Dr. Phil television program was on the H.E. Bailey Turnpike nearly two years ago with her boyfriend Jim Maxwell when a jar of sulfuric acid crashed through their windshield. Both suffered severe burns.

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A bill authored by Senator Jim Maddox, D-Lawton, would boost support for the Oklahoma Wind Power Initiative (OWPI) and its efforts to promote wind energy resources as an economic development tool.

SB 342 would send additional funding to the OWPI, which is located at the University of Oklahoma's Environmental Verification and Analysis Center. The Senate passed the measure on February 26th.

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Senator Mike Morgan and Representative Dan Boren announced Wednesday that they have agreed to withdraw Senate Bill 637 from consideration during the current legislative session, citing their desire to further study the issue.

Morgan, D-Stillwater, is the principal author of the measure. Boren, D-Seminole, is the House author.
Senate Bill 637 would change the way judges are appointed to the state's Worker's Compensation Court.

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The State Senate has given the nod to a measure that would let the people of Oklahoma decide whether the penalties included in last Novembers state question banning cockfighting were too severe. Senator Frank Shurden is the author of Senate Bill 3. The measure would let voters decide whether to change the penalty for violating the state ban from a felony to a misdemeanor. The voters really didnt have the chance to decide on the penalty, which is currently a felony. That puts hard working Oklahomans who raise gaming birds in the same category as murderers, rapists and drug dealers.

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Oklahoma State Senate Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 30 Clip For Immediate Release: March , 2003
Sens. Coffee, Williamson and Pruitt talk to
reporters about Republican budget proposals Senate GOP Seeks to Break Fiscal Deadlock

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Senate President Pro Tempore Cal Hobson today received a letter of resignation from Senator Gene Stipe, D-McAlester.

Senator Stipe has had a long and productive career serving the people of southeastern Oklahoma and has been a friend of the poor, the elderly and working men and women of this state for more than five decades. His wit and wealth of historic knowledge will be missed, said Hobson, D-Lexington.

Notice of the senators resignation will be forwarded to Gov. Brad Henry.

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