OKLAHOMA CITY – More than 70 interim studies have been approved by Senate leadership, and among them are two by Sen. Adam Pugh, R-Edmond. The Senate Education Committee chairman and member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Education wants to study teacher credentialing and certification as well as COVID’s impact on learning outcomes and what the state can do to overcome any negative effects.read more.
Of the 71 interim study requests approved by Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat last week, five were requested by state Sen. George Young, D-Oklahoma City. The series of studies would give senators the opportunity to delve into topics such as racial equality, health disparities in the African American community, minority-owned businesses and funding for historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU).read more.
UPDATE: As of Thursday afternoon, 17 Republican senators had joined Sen. Bullard in urging the State Board of Education and State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister to fully implement provisions of House Bill 1775 at their special school board meeting Monday.read more.
Saying too many questions remain unanswered, Sen. Casey Murdock, R-Felt, and Rep. Carl Newton, R-Cherokee, are calling on Gov. Kevin Stitt to delay closing the William S. Key Correctional Center until it can be determined exactly how much shuttering the facility will cost. The lawmakers said they still had questions after a recent Senate Appropriations Committee hearing on the closure.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat on Friday announced the approval of all requests for interim studies submitted by Oklahoma Senate members. Senators submitted 72 interim study requests; one request was withdrawn.
Pro Tem Treat, R-Oklahoma City, assigned interim study requests to Senate committees with jurisdiction over the subject matter of the request. Treat said committee chairs will determine when and if the interim studies assigned to their committee will be held.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – Senate Appropriations Chair Roger Thompson, R-Okemah, and Sen. Casey Murdock, R-Felt, issued the following statements after the Senate Appropriations Committee held a hearing Tuesday on the Department of Corrections’ (DOC) announcement of the closing of the William S. Key Correctional Center in Fort Supply. Among those appearing before the committee were Tricia Everest, Cabinet Secretary of Public Safety, Deputy Secretary Jason Nelson, Scott Crow, DOC Director, and Ashlee Clemmons, DOC Chief Financial Officer.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – Sen. Cody Rogers, R-Tulsa, has been joined by nearly a dozen fellow members of the Senate in asking Interim Attorney General Dawn Cash to investigate allegations of price gouging and market manipulation in the building supply industry during the COVID-19 pandemic.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY - A joint legislative committee will help prioritize proposals for state government’s share of federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds.
Under federal law, ARPA funds for state governments are to be used only to respond to the public health emergency and negative economic effects caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Such uses can include payments to state agencies, nonprofits, industry and households. They can also include investments in public infrastructure.read more.
Senate Bill 658, which will greatly restrict mask mandates and forbid COVID vaccine passports in educational institutions, has been signed into law. The measure was authored by Sen. Rob Standridge, R-Norman.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – Sen. James Leewright, R-Bristow, said now that Gov. Kevin Stitt has signed Senate Bill 1033 into law, the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority (OMMA) and the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (OBNDD) can proceed with developing and finalizing agreements that will better protect legitimate Oklahoma businesses by ensuring more resources to go after criminal operations. Leewright is principal author of the legislation.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – The first regular session of the 58th Legislature adjourned Sine Die on Thursday with Senate leaders calling it a big success overall for Oklahoma.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – Legislation was signed into law Tuesday to incentivize Oklahoma businesses to host blood drives for their employees. Senate Bill 905’s author, Sen. David Bullard, R-Durant, said the new law will help boost critically low blood supplies by providing more opportunities for citizens to donate.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma State Senate and the House of Representatives redistricting offices today announced the schedule for town hall meetings on the congressional redistricting process. Legislators and redistricting office staff will answer questions and take comments from the public during the meetings.
Five in-person town halls are scheduled – one in each congressional district. Two virtual town halls also will be held for those who can’t attend one of the in-person meetings.
The town hall meetings are scheduled for:read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Senate on Thursday passed the appropriations bill to fully fund state government services for Fiscal Year 2022, which starts July 1.read more.
A measure aimed at addressing school funding equity for brick-and-mortar public and charter schools passed the Senate on Thursday.
Authored by Sen. John Michael Montgomery, R-Lawton, Senate Bill 229, also known as the Redbud School Funding Act, would tap into more than $30 million of medical marijuana tax revenue and the State Public Common School Building Equalization Fund to use the dollars as annual grants for more than 300 public school districts and brick-and-mortar charter schools that receive below average local tax revenue funding.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – About 40 states nationwide have waiting lists for services for individuals with developmental disabilities. Sen. Paul Rosino, R-Oklahoma City, said legislation he presented in the Senate on Wednesday to lay the foundation for eliminating Oklahoma’s own waiting list was signed into law by Gov. Kevin Stitt Thursday.read more.
State Senator George Young, D-Oklahoma City, issued the following statement in response to the Fiscal Year 2022 budget and the priorities that lie within it.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – The full Senate has given its approval to Senate Bill 608, the “Filmed in Oklahoma Act of 2021.” The measure, by Senate Appropriations Vice Chair Sen. Chuck Hall, R-Perry, and House Appropriations and Budget Subcommittee on Finance, Revenue and Taxation Chair Rep. Scott Fetgatter, R-Okmulgee, establishes a $30 million cap on first-come, first-served rebates for TV and film productions in Oklahoma.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY –The Legislature paid tribute to retiring Higher Education Chancellor Glen D. Johnson on Wednesday, thanking him for his service to the state and wishing him well as he begins his next chapter. Senate Appropriations Chair Roger Thompson, R-Okemah, and House Chair of the Appropriations and Budget Subcommittee on Education Mark McBride, R-Moore, are coauthors of Senate Concurrent Resolution 10, honoring Johnson’s extensive service to the state. Johnson retires as chancellor Sept. 30, 2021.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat, R-Oklahoma City, commended the full Senate for overwhelmingly passing Senate Bill 1080, which makes improvements to the Equal Opportunity Scholarship Act.read more.