The Oklahoma Senate

Week In Review
Monday, March 20 to Wednesday March 23, 2006

Monday, March 20

• The Senate turned its attention to bills coming from the opposite chamber this week, working mostly in committees. Measures approved on the Senate Floor on Monday include:

-HCR 1047, by Sen. James Williamson, honors Lieutenant Junior Grade (LTJG) Thomas Jerome Hudner Jr. for his gallantry and fearless persistence in saving a fellow pilot’s life and declares March 25, 2006, LTJG Thomas Hudner Day in
Oklahoma.

-SR 73, by Sen. Clark Jolley, commends American Mothers Inc. and the Oklahoma Mothers Association and congratulates Cynthia Collins-Clark on being named the 2006 Oklahoma Mother of the Year.

-SR 74, by Sen. Cliff Branan, congratulates Connell Branan on being named the 2006 Oklahoma Young Mother of the Year.


• No Senate committees met on Monday.


• The House also focused on committee work this week. Bills approved on the House Floor Monday include the following measures:

-HR 1080, by Rep. Rex Duncan, requests that the Oklahoma congressional delegation give priority to passing and enacting the defense appropriations bill over other spending bills in 2006 and future years.


• House committees approved a few bills on Monday, including the following measures:

-SB 1065, by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm and Rep. Terry Ingmire, would remove the requirement that the Department of Human Services maintain permanent copies of all warrants issued to recipients of public assistance.

-SB 1509, by Sen. Glenn Coffee and Rep. Dennis Adkins, expands the definition of “treatment facility” under the state Dental Act to include mobile dental units.

Tuesday, March 21

• On Tuesday, the Senate continued to focus on committee work. Measures approved Tuesday on the Senate Floor include:

-HCR 1042, by Sen. Mary Easley, established April 18, 2006, as McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Waterway to the World Awareness Day.


• Senate committees approved several bills on Tuesday, including the following measures:

-HB 2506, by Sen. Richard Lerblance, would extend the termination date of the Corporation Commission Plugging Fund, funded by petroleum excise taxes, to July 1, 2011.

-HB 2529, by Sen. Daisy Lawler, would remove the address and contact information for the witness of a crime from the law enforcement records and court documents at the request of the witness.

-HB 2062, by Sen. Mike Morgan, would exempt tickets to minor-league sports events from sales taxes.

-HB 2792, by Sen. Randy Bass, would provide a 15 percent rebate on expenditures for films made in Oklahoma with a minimum budget of $30 million.

-HB 2793, by Sen. Randy Bass, would provide an income tax credit for up to 25 percent of the profit made from investment in an Oklahoma film or music project.

-HB 2512, by Sen. Cal Hobson, would provide an income tax credit for Oklahomans who have a wind or photovoltaic energy system or a geothermal heating and cooling system installed on their residential or nonresidential property.

-HB 2397, by Sen. Mary Easley, would provide a sales tax exemption on food boxes of up to $50 for needy families, including food boxes provided by church organizations.

-HB 2396, by Sen. Clark Jolley, would prohibit public entities covered by the Open Meetings Act to disclose Social Security numbers.

-HB 2083, by Sen. Clark Jolley, would create the Computer Spyware Protection Act, making it unlawful for a person who is not an owner or operator of a computer to surreptitiously install certain software on a computer, such as spyware or malware.

-HB 2073, by Sen. Jim Wilson, would provide a $500 income tax deduction for volunteer firefighters, reserve police officers and reserve sheriff’s deputies.

-HB 2462, by Sen. Randy Bass, would raise from 50 percent to 100 percent the income tax exemption on retirement benefits for members of the U.S. Armed Forces.

-HB 2962, by Sen. Richard Lerblance, would delete the requirement that an attorney be made an attorney of record in representing a party.

-HB 2454, by Sen. Brian Crain, would remove the requirement that a person seeking a protective order provide a copy of a law enforcement report.

-HB 2499, by Sen. Gilmer Capps, would allow the right of ownership of a burial plot to revert to the cemetery after 75 years has passed since the last recorded activity on the burial space and after a reasonable search for heirs and beneficiaries.


• The House did not consider any bills on the floor on Tuesday. House committees approved a few bills, including the following measures:

-SB 1539, by Sen. Debbe Leftwich and Rep. Gus Blackwell, would remove court clerks’ authority to collect supervision fees and retain 10 percent to cover administration costs.


Wednesday, March 22

• The Senate passed a few measures on the floor Wednesday before adjourning to work in committees. Bills approved on the Senate Floor include:

-SR 76, by Sen. Daisy Lawler, proclaims Wednesday, March 22, 2006, to be Agriculture Day in the State of Oklahoma as part of National Agriculture Week.

-SR 72, by Sen. Mike Morgan, commends the Oklahoma Alliance of Boys and Girls Clubs and declares March 29, 2006, as Oklahoma Alliance of Boys and Girls Clubs Day at the State Capitol.


• The following measures were approved in Senate committees on Wednesday:

-HB 2470, by Sen. Clark Jolley, modifies the time limitation and definitions relating to the Public Competitive Bidding Act of 1974.

-HB 2554, by Sen. Harry Coates, requires the Department of Central Services to create a database to track the condition of all state physical assets.


• The following measures were approved on the House floor Wednesday:

-HCR 1049, by Sen. Tom Adelson, recognizes the importance of identifying the causes of and a cure for Multiple Sclerosis, thanks the Oklahoma Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society for its work, and declares March 2006 as Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month.

-HR 1086, by Rep. Dale DeWitt, proclaims March 22, 2006, as Agriculture Day in Oklahoma.


• Other measures approved by House committees on Wednesday include:

-SB 1665, by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm and Rep. Greg Piatt, would provide a sales tax holiday for certain back-to-school purchases.

-SB 1655, by Sen. Debbe Leftwich and Rep. Gary Banz, would provide an income tax exemption for federal civil service retirees.

-SB 408, by Sen. Mike Mazzei and Rep. Ray Young, expands the definition of “qualified purchases” under the Oklahoma Research and Development Act to include scientific equipment.

-SB 1305, by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm and Rep. Kevin Calvey, expands the sales tax exemption for certain businesses primarily engaged in wholesale distribution of groceries.

-SB 1312, by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm and Rep. John Carey, would enact an Oklahoma Lifetime Learning Tax Credit.

-SB 1391, by Sen. Debbe Leftwich and Rep. Randy Terrill, would provide collateral heirs the same estate tax exemptions available to lineal heirs.

Thursday, March 23

• On Thursday, measures approved on the Senate Floor include:

- HCR 1049, by Sen. Tom Adelson, recognizes the importance of identifying the causes of and a cure for Multiple Sclerosis, thanks the Oklahoma Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society for its work, and declares March 2006 as Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month.


• The full Senate will reconvene at 1:30 p.m. on Monday, March 27th.

Other News


• Wednesday was Agriculture Day at the Capitol. Displays in the rotunda highlighted an array of Made in Oklahoma agricultural products.

• House Majority Floor Leader Lance Cargill, R-Harrah, resigned his post Monday. Speaker Todd Hiett appointed freshman Rep. Daniel Sullivan, R-Tulsa, to be the new majority floor leader.

• Due to significant rainfall over the weekend, Gov. Brad Henry on Monday lifted the statewide burn ban that has been in effect since November.

• The deadline for submitting design ideas for the Oklahoma Commemorative Quarter to the Oklahoma Centennial Commission is next week. Oklahoma’s quarter will be issued in early 2008. The proposals will eventually be narrowed to 10 finalists and given to Gov. Brad Henry, who will then submit three to five ideas to the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

Index