The Oklahoma Senate

Week In Review
Monday, May 10th through Thursday May 13th, 2004

Monday, May 10th

• The Senate met briefly to consider legislation, including the following:

-CCR for HB 1694 by Sen. Debbe Leftwich and Rep. Michael Tyler would modify contracting procedures for turnpike concessions. The bill passed 38-0 and the emergency passed 39-0.

-HA for SB 1104 by Sen. Gilmer Capps and Rep. Joe Sweeden would modify language relating to elections and would allow media access to election booths. The bill and emergency passed 38-5.

-CCR for HB 1478 by Sen. Angela Monson and Rep. Clay Pope would delete the expiration dates for tax credit for entities primarily engaged in providing child care services. The bill passed 42-1.

-HA for SB 1580 by Sen. Ted Fisher and Rep. Jari Askins would require the Office of Personnel Management to implement a direct deposit system for employees hired after June 30, 2004 and the employees must participate by June 30, 2007. The bill passed 37-2.

• The House was also working to consider legislation on the floor including the following:

-CCR for HB 1858 by Rep. Darrell Gilbert and Sen. Randy Brogdon would allow a territory within five miles of the corporate limits of a municipality with a population of more than 200,000 to incorporate as a new municipality if it can be proved to the board of county commissioners by documentation that the territory has historically been identified as a community of people residing in compact form. The bill passed 95-0.

-CCR for HB 2330 by Rep. Michael Tyler and Sen. Richard Lerblance would provide for participation by certain circuit engineering district employees in relation to the Oklahoma Public Employees Retirement System. The bill and emergency passed 94-0.

-HR 1045 by Rep. Jim Wilson would direct the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation to hold several, well-publicized community hearings prior to renewal of any permit involving Spring Creek. The resolution was adopted.

-Third CCR for SB 649 by Sen. Mike Johnson and Rep. James Covey would require juvenile bureaus and citizens’ advisory committees to be created in counties with a population of more than 80,000. The third conference committee report was due to a change in the date. The bill and emergency passed 95-0.

-SCR 63 by Sen. Cal Hobson, Sen. Stratton Taylor, and Rep. Tad Jones commends the life of Bob Wadley.


• The General Conference Committee on Appropriations (GCCA) approved measures Monday including the following:
-CCS for HB 2038 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell would make an appropriation to the Oklahoma State Senate. The measure adds $250,000 for the impeachment procedures of Insurance Commissioner Carroll Fisher and $100,000 for technical upgrades.

-CCS for HB 2030 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell would make an appropriation to Oklahoma House of Representatives. The supplemental measure adds $100,000 IT security and digital conversion and $250,000 for impeachment costs.

-CCS for SB 1060 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell would make an appropriation to the district courts.

.-CCS for SB 1105 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm and Rep. John Carey would create the State Employee Advocacy Rights Act and would allow employees to hold meetings before or after working hours or during lunch periods on state property and would allow employee organizations to submit information to state agencies for new employee packets.

-CCS for SB 1158 by Sen. Richard Lerblance and Rep. Mike Mass and Rep. Bill Paulk would modify criteria for employee performance management system in relation to the Oklahoma Personnel Act.

-CCS for SB 1447 by Sen. Sam Helton and Rep. Jari Askins would delete certain language for mandatory DNA testing and submission of testing.

-CCS for HB 1889 by Rep. Jerry Ellis and Sen. Jeff Rabon relates to the Oklahoma Charity Games Act by exempting veterans organizations from certain taxation and sets procedures.

-CCS for HB 2213 by Rep. Greg Piatt and Sen. Johnnie Crutchfield would provide for sales tax exemption for certain public trust authorities.

• Governor Brad Henry signed HB 2552 by Rep. Danny Hilliard and Sen. Debbe Leftwich. The measure creates the Belle Maxine Hilliard Breast and Cervical Cancer Treatment Revolving Fund to provide screening and treatment for women eligible for Medicaid. Last week the Governor signed SB 978, which includes a $2.5 million appropriation to the Oklahoma Health Care Authority for the fund.
• The Governor also signed SB 1547 by Sen. Kathleen Wilcoxson and Rep. Joan Greenwood that will allow those who have purchased long-term care insurance and have exhausted their benefits to retain assets equivalent to the amount of the policy and remain eligible for Medicaid assistance.


Tuesday, May 11th

• The Senate met briefly to continue hearing legislation on the floor then adjourned to GCCA. The measures considered by the full Senate were the following:

-CCR for SB 1252 by Sen. Cal Hobson and Rep. Larry Adair would repeal Enrolled SB 553 as signed by the Governor on March 8, 2004. SB 1252 would create the State-Tribal Gaming Act if approved by a vote of the people. The bill passed 31-17.

-CCR for HB 1418 by Sen. Frank Shurden and Rep. Joe Hutchison would allow expenditure from the state contingency and emergency fund for emergency response action by the United State Army Corps of Engineers. The bill passed 44-0.

-CCR for SB 935 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell would make an appropriation to the Office of the State Bond Advisor. The bill and emergency passed 40-0.

-CCR for SB 964 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell would make an appropriation to the Office of Personnel Management. The bill and emergency passed 45-0.

-HA for SB 1160 by Sen. Sam Helton and Rep. Jari Askins would prohibit certain leasing, borrowing and use of certain provider panels and limiting the number of vision plans and rate schedules offered annually. The bill passed 26-17 and the emergency passed 32-11.

-CCR for SB 1340 by Sen. Charlie Laster and Rep. Debbie Blackburn would change procedures and timeline related to child custody. The bill passed 44-1.

-CCR for SB 1299 by Sen. Frank Shurden and Rep. M.C. Leist would require certain training for the Capitol Patrol. The bill and emergency passed 32-13.

-HA for SB 1385 by Sen. Gilmer Capps and Rep. David Braddock would exempt information solicited by the Office of Personnel Management from public and private sector employers for analysis from the Oklahoma Open Records Act. The bill also requires a quality management function to be created with OPM to assist state agencies in integrating management models into business practices to improve efficiency. The bill and emergency passed 45-0.

• The House considered the following legislation:

-HB 1874 by Rep. Ron Langmacher and Sen. Bruce Price states the Commissioner of Labor cannot develop rules for the abatement of friable asbestos materials more stringent than federal standards. The motion to consider the bill passed 53-43 after it failed last week 48-43. The final bill passed 51-47 and the emergency failed 52-44.

-CCR for SB 1207 by Sen. Johnnie Crutchfield and Rep. Barbara Staggs would require the State Board of Education to provide an annual salary bonus of $5,000 to any certified school psychologists and any certified speech-language pathologist. The bill passed 98-0.

-CCR for HB 2643 by Rep. Barbara Staggs and Sen. Johnnie Crutchfield would change the language relating to administration of the retirement system. The bill and emergency passed 98-0.

GCCA passed several measures on Tuesday including the following:
-CCS for SB 925 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for SB 927 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for SB 929 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for SB 931 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for SB 1016 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for SB 2010 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for HB 2014 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for HB 2016 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for HB 2018 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for HB 2020 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for HB 2026 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for HB 2036 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for HB 2072 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for HB 2074 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for HB 2085 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for SB 1146 by Sen. Mike Morgan, Sen. Ben Robinson, Rep. Jack Bonny and Rep. Bill Mitchell;
-CCS for SB 1155 by Sen. Dick Wilkerson and Rep. David Braddock;
-CCS for HB 2299 by Rep. Sue Tibbs and Sen. Angela Monson;
-CCS for HB 2335 by Rep. Barbara Staggs and Sen. Jeff Rabon;
-CCS for HB 2441 by Rep. Paul Roan and Sen. Glenn Coffee;
-CCS for HB 2680 by Rep. Joe Dorman and Sen. Robert Kerr.

• Governor Brad Henry signed several measures on Tuesday including:
-HB 2300 by Rep. Sue Tibbs and Sen. Bernest Cain defines the term “home care agency.” The legislation will also establish the Oklahoma Consumer-Directed Personal Assistance and Support Services Act, which would provide help on a voluntary basis to families with a Medicaid-eligible member who requires long-term support services so that person can state in a family residence or remain in their own home.
-HB 2494 by Rep. Dennis Adkins and Sen. Glenn Coffee prohibits aircraft manufacturers from taking certain actions and terminating certain agreements.
-SB 1184 by Sen. Dick Wilkerson and Rep. David Braddock would increase the fee for criminal history background checks form $10 to $15.
-SB 1265 by Sen. Jerry Smith and Rep. Bill Case would remove certain court fees, requires payment of postage for certain notices and removes limitation on certain deposits.
-SB 1331 by Sen. Dick Wilkerson and Rep. John Nance modifies the definition of electronic communication and provides procedures and circumstances fro the interception of wire, oral or electronic communications during a specified time period.
-SB 1363 by Sen. Scott Pruitt and Rep. Thad Balkman requires any state agency that denies an exemption from tax liability to provide a written response to the applicant at the time of denial.
-SB 1502 by Sen. Dick Wilkerson and Rep. Lucky Lamons authorizes jurisdiction and venue for a pattern of criminal offenses, and states penalty.
-SB 1412 by Sen. Dick Wilkerson and Rep. Paul Roan would increase the penalty assessment of certain offenses from $7 to $9.
-SB 1618 by Sen. Jerry Smith and Rep. Terry Harrison updates language relating to civil procedures and courts.
-SB 1622 by Sen. Charlie Laster and Rep. Bill Nations requires development of a new method for calculating state Medicaid program payments.


Wednesday, May 12th

• The Senate met briefly and then adjourned to continue working on bills in GCCA. Legislation considered by the full Senate were the following:

-CCR for HB 2643 by Sen. Johnnie Crutchfield and Rep. Barbara Staggs would modify language relating to administration of the retirement system. The bill and emergency passed 46-0.

-CCR for SB 850 by Sen. Johnnie Crutchfield and Rep. Greg Piatt would change the number of citizens required for notice of misconduct in office from five to fifteen or one percent of people who voted in the last election of the municipality or county. The bill passed 41-0.

-CCR for SB 1144 by Sen. Kenneth Corn and Rep. James Covey would clarify language relating to the State and Education Employees Group Insurance Board and the Teacher’s Retirement System of Oklahoma. The title was stricken. The bill and emergency passed 47-0.

-CCR for SB 1284 by Sen. Ben Robinson and Rep. Larry Adair would add certain public entities eligible to receive specified Special Universal Services. The bill passed 47-0.

-CCR for SB 1317 by Sen. Sam Helton and Rep. Dale Wells would remove entities affected by fair field pricing. The bill and emergency passed 47-0.

-CCR for SB 1400 by Sen. Maxine Horner and Rep. Darrell Gilbert modifies fines and community service imposed on juveniles for breaking county curfews. The bill and emergency passed 39-6.

-The Senate rejected House amendments for SB 1407 by Sen. Glenn Coffee and Rep. Fred Morgan. The measure would allow municipal courts to hear any violation of any municipal ordinance for driving under the influence of alcohol or other intoxicating substance and expands DUI violations to include public property. Sen. Ted Fisher moved to reject the House amendments and send the bill to conference by suspending Senate rules to do so. Both motions were approved.

-HA for SB 1483 by Sen. Ted Fisher and Rep. Jari Askins would provide for distribution of property upon demutualization or reorganization of an insurance company, limits the time requirement for reporting or remitting mineral interests and removes requirements for certain notification relating to unclaimed property. The bill and emergency passed 42-0.

-SCR 66 by Sen. Jeff Rabon and Rep. Joe Sweeden would create the Waste Tire Recycling Indemnity Fund Joint Task Force. The resolution was adopted.

• The House approved the following measures:

-CCR for SB 1252 by Sen. Cal Hobson and Rep. Larry Adair would repeal Enrolled SB 553 as signed by the Governor on March 8, 2004. SB 1252 would create the State Tribal Gaming Act if approved by a vote of the people. The conference committee report was adopted 52-48 and the bill passed 58-42.

-CCR for HB 2664 by Rep. Larry Adair and Sen. Cal Hobson relates to lobbyist registration and would require payment of certain fees and provide for deposit of fees. The bill passed 73-26.

-CCR for HB 2038 by Rep. Jack Bonny, Rep. Bill Mitchell, Sen. Mike Morgan and Sen. Ben Robinson would make an appropriation to the Oklahoma State Senate. The bill passed 58-40.

-CCR for HB 1695 by Rep. Michael Tyler and Sen. Debbe Leftwich would clarify language that relates to Oklahoma Turnpike designation and includes all sections and extension. The bill and emergency passed 100-0.

-CCR for HB 2134 by Rep. Ron Peters and Sen. Nancy Riley would delete requirements related to marriage licenses related to health examinations. The bill passed 99-0.

-SA for HB 2464 by Rep. Darrell Gilbert and Sen. Ben Robinson would create and provide exemptions to the Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselors Act. The bill also creates the State Board of Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselors. The bill and emergency passed 96-3.

-CCR for SB 1254 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm would provide for an ad valorem tax exemption on any property damaged by the May 8, 2003 tornado for a period of five years based on the value of the previously qualifying assets. The bill and emergency passed 94-0.

• The members of the Joint Committee on Lawsuit Reform released two committee versions of a tort reform measure Wednesday. One version follows the Governor’s vision of tort reform with a complete summary submitted to members of the committee and was immediately followed by another proposed floor substitute by Sen. Glenn Coffee and outlines the GOP’s plan for reform.

• Governor Brad Henry signed five bills on Wednesday including the following:
-HB 2488 by Rep. Mark Liotta and Sen. Randy Brogdon prohibits certain uses of social security measures.
-HB 2129 by Rep. John Carey and Sen. Jay Paul Gumm relates to revenue and taxation by authorizing income tax check off for support of training of court appointed special advocates. The bill also creates the Income Tax Checkoff Revolving Fund for Training of Court Appointed Special Advocates and allows for refund claims to be made during specific timeframes.
-SB 1503 by Sen. Dick Wilkerson and Rep. Lucky Lamons prohibits false or fraudulent statements to financial institutions to obtain certain information and states penalty.
-SB 1507 by Sen. Ted Fisher and Rep. John Carey relates to public buildings and public works. It also provides an alternative for complying with certain requirements relating to the execution of public contracts.
-SB 1526by Sen. Dick Wilkerson and Rep. Paul Roan includes additional schedules of drugs to the Anti-Drug Conversion Act.

Thursday, May 13th

• The Senate convened at 9:00 a.m. to hear legislation. They will reconvene on Monday, May 17th at 1:00 p.m.

Other News

• Witness testimony continues in the Special Investigative Committee meeting. Committee Chair Opio Toure announced the committee had decided in an executive session that they would complete a preliminary report to deliver to the House of Representatives and would contain the assessment that the committee would not have enough time, therefore needing a special session to complete the task.

• House Republicans elected Rep. Todd Hiett as speaker-designate in a historic vote by the caucus on Tuesday. The Republican Party has not been in the majority since 1922.

• Late Wednesday legislative leaders announced an agreement on a measure to decide the mid-term vacancy issue created by term limits. CCR for HB 2663 by Rep. Larry Adair and Sen. Kenneth Corn would provide procedures for scheduling and holding elections to fill the seat of a member of the Legislature who has reached his or her term limits and is unable to complete their elected term. The bill also clarifies the time and manner for publication of the notice for district board of education elections and would require technology center school districts to divide its territory into district zones.

• Governor Brad Henry announced his tobacco tax and health care initiative, officially submitting it for final legislative action. The same day the Senate Republican Leader James Williamson along with caucus members unveiled their proposal for a 99 cent tobacco tax increase. However Senate Leader Cal Hobson after further reviewing both plans decided to support the Governor’s 55 cent tobacco tax increase.

Index