House Completes Floor Deadline Week

March 16th, 2020

The House officially passed its third reading deadline, which is the day when bills must pass their chamber of origin in order to continue the legislative process. Of the 1,361 bills filed in the House of Representatives in January, we passed 410 bills to our colleagues in the Senate. This week alone, we heard over 230 bills.

Those bills have now been moved to the Senate to be considered, and we’ll begin doing the same with legislation that passed the Senate. I personally passed eight bills off the House floor with the unanimous support of my colleagues, all of which are eligible to be heard in the Senate.

It’s been a stressful week, to say the least, and not solely because of our legislative deadline. We all watched as the oil and gas industry took a downtown this week. This could have a significant impact on next year’s state budget. Approximately 20% of our state allocated revenue comes from the oil and gas industry, which employs more Oklahomans than any other industry in our state.

This significant decline in the commodity price of oil is very concerning. My thoughts and prayers go out to those in the industry that are going through these challenging times.

As Oklahomans, we have experienced the volatile boom and bust cycle of our oil and gas industry, and I know we will come together to get through this one just like we have the previous downturns.

We also saw this week the true impact of the coronavirus here in Oklahoma. This past week, we had our first few people test positive in our state, and now many major sporting events are closing or postponing until the worst is over. The President announced a 30-day travel ban to and from Europe to help slow the spread of the virus.

We need to make sure we are following proper hygiene practices, just like during normal flu season. Please stay informed with updates from the Oklahoma State Department of Health and the U.S. Center for Disease Control.

I know from talking to many constituents here in House District that there is a lot of uncertainty surrounding this situation. Nobody has all the answers, but I do know that God is always in control. I will continue to pray for His wisdom and guidance as we make difficult decisions at the state level. 

His word says in Philippians 4:6-7, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”It’s truly an honor and privilege to represent you and District 51 at the State Capitol. I encourage you to reach out to my office with any questions or concerns that you may have. God Bless!

Former House District 51 State Representative Ray McCarter came to the Capitol this week. I was able to recognize him on the House Floor and visit with him for a few minutes.
Press conference I attended with my House colleagues regarding the state employee retiree cost of living adjustment increase we passed on the House floor this week. It’s been 12 years since these retirees have had an increase and our bill would give up to a 4% increase for state employees that have been retired more than 5 years.
This past Wednesday was Tag Agent day at the Capitol and it was great visiting with Marlow Tag Agent Dana Underwood who came to the Capitol.
Oklahoma Secretary of Agriculture Blayne Arthur who is also a Chickasha native came and spoke to our House Rural caucus meeting this week. She is doing a great job leading the Dept of Ag!
House Speaker Pro Temp. Harold Wright from Weatherford visiting with me on the House Floor about a bill during session.
the Marlow 4th grade elementary classes who came to the Capitol to learn about state government on Thursday.
Rep. McEntire and myself at the Stephens County GOP meeting on Thursday night where we both gave a legislative update.

Here is a good public safety data sheet regarding COVID-19.