The Oklahoma Senate

Week In Review
Monday, April 17 through Wednesday, April 20, 2006

Monday, April 17

• The Senate returned this week for the second of three consecutive weeks focusing on floor activity. The deadline for third reading of bills in the opposite house is April 27. Measures approved on the Senate floor Monday include the following:


HB 3085 by Sen. Johnnie Crutchfield, would require public disclosure of motor vehicle VIN numbers and salvage information about vehicles being sold for insurance companies.

HB 1908 by Sen. Brian Crain, would provide that students enrolled in high school, vocational school or an alternative education program are entitled to support from parents after the child reaches age 18 until graduation or until the age of 20, whichever occurs first.

HCR 1061 by Sen. Cal Hobson, designates April 17, 2006, as Diabetes Awareness Day in the state.

HB 1268 by Sen. Tom Adelson, would create the Unclaimed Gas and Electric Utility Deposit Fund. The measure would require that the State Treasurer deposit 45 percent of each abandoned deposit to the Utility Deposit Fund and 55 percent to the Oklahoma Teacher’s Retirement Fund.

HB 1672 by Sen. Cal Hobson, would require veterinarians to report suspected animal abuse to the appropriate law enforcement agency within 24 hours of an examination.

HB 2097 by Sen. Susan Paddack, would require that school districts offer professional development programs that include training on identifying potential cases of child abuse.

HB 2356 by Sen. Gilmer Capps, would authorize the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology to develop a nanotechnology pilot project.

HB 2397 by Sen. Mary Easley, would provide a sales tax exemption for sales of food by churches or 501(c)3 organizations for the purpose of feeding the needy.

HB 2424 by Sen. Earl Garrison, would establish a misdemeanor for the violation of the prohibition against splitting contracts in the Public Competitive Bidding Act of 1974.

HB 2499 by Sen. Owen Laughlin, would revert right of ownership in unused burial sites after a period of 75 years has passed without recorded activity on a space.

HB 2516 by Sen. Debbe Leftwich, would authorize the Oklahoma Capital Improvement Authority to provide equipment to the Edmond Forensic Science Center for improvements.

HB 2518 by Sen. Susan Paddack, would allow the Department of Corrections to employ certified medication aides to distribute medications in correctional facilities.

HB 2527 by Sen. Constance Johnson, would require the Cosmetology Board to increase license renewal fees by $10 annually.

HB 2589 by Sen. Cal Hobson, would allow students who were absent following Hurricane Katrina to withdraw from courses and receive a grade of incomplete and credit for tuition already paid.

SR 87 by Sen. Kenneth Corn, mourns the loss of Heavener researcher Gloria Farley.

HB 2083 by Sen. Clark Jolley, would create the Computer Spyware Protection Act.

HB 2480 by Sen. Mary Easley, establishes the statute of limitations for prosecution of soliciting murder at seven years after the discovery of the crime.

HB 2609 by Sen. Charles Laster, would allow courts to place electronic monitoring devices on defendants involved in domestic abuse cases involving protective orders.

HB 2655 by Sen. Daisy Lawler, would create the Oklahoma Farm-to-School program to provide fresh produce to Oklahoma schools.


• The Senate held no committee meetings Monday, as the deadline for committee consideration of bills originating in the opposite house passed on April 6.

• The House continued to focus on both floor activity and committee work this week. Bills approved on the House floor Monday include the following measures:

SB 806 by Sen. Frank Shurden, legalizes the practice of tattooing individuals 18 and older.

HCR 1061 by Sen. Cal Hobson, designates April 17, 2006, as Diabetes Awareness Day.

SB 1089 by Sen. Kathleen Wilcoxson, prohibits payday loan centers and pawn shops from selling lottery tickets.

SB 1296 by Sen. Frank Shurden, requires the Department of Wildlife Conservation Commission to move the opening of mountain lion hunting season to December.

SB 1312 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm, would enact the Oklahoma Lifetime Learning Tax Credit. Individuals who receive a lifetime learning tax credit on their federal taxes would also receive a lifetime learning tax credit on their state taxes.

SJR 37 by Sen. Brian Crain, would propose a constitutional amendment allowing the legislature to enact laws governing procedures for applying for freeport exemptions to county assessors.


• House Committees approved a number of bills Monday, including the following:


SB 1915 by Sen. Bernest Cain, would authorize the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services to establish and collect fees for certification of community residential mental health facilities and community-based crisis centers.

SB 1397 by Sen. Mary Easley, would require poultry waste treatment, handling, management and removal comply with the terms established in Tulsa et al v. Tyson Foods Inc.

SB 1366 by Sen. Cal Hobson, would direct that after $1 million is deposited into the Oklahoma Corporation Revolving Fund, 8 percent of the remainder of revenue from the fuel tax is to be deposited into the Department of Environmental Quality Revolving Fund.

SB 1460 by Sen. Charles Wyrick, would create the Uniform Environmental Covenants Act to govern environmental remediation of real property conveyed by the Military Department.

SB 1548 by Sen. Earl Garrison, would establish a fee per ton of disposed solid waste.

SB 1726 by Sen. Jonathan Nichols, would remove the requirement that the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services consult with D.U.I. School Administrators of Oklahoma when promulgating governing rules.

Tuesday, April 18

• The Senate continued to focus on floor work Tuesday. Measures approved included the following:


HB 2621 by Sen. Charles Wyrick, would change annual fees for big game hunting on commercial hunting areas from $200 to $500.

HB 3016 by Sen. Gilmer Capps, limits oral permission to hunt on property to no more than a year unless specified by the land owner.

HB 3042 by Sen. Bernest Cain, would add six additional members to the Commission on Children and Youth, to be appointed by the governor.

HB 2485 by Sen. Charlie Laster, would require compounds containing salvia divinorum and dextromethorphan to be disposed of by licensed pharmacists.

HB 2358 by Sen. Susan Paddack, would establish guidelines for breast-feeding in the workplace.

HB 2592 by Sen. Bernest Cain, modifies procedures relating to the Group Homes for Persons with Developmental or Physical Disabilities Act.

HB 2611 by Sen. Earl Garrison, would authorize county assessors and county clerks to receive up to $500 a month in travel allowances.

HB 2522 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm, would allow an income tax deduction of up to $10,000 for individuals or their dependents that donate one or more human organs.

HB 2882 by Sen. Charlie Laster, would authorize individuals who have undergone at least eight hours of marriage training to perform marital counseling.


• Senate committees did not meet Tuesday.

• A number of bills were passed on the House floor Tuesday, including the following:


SB 1644 by Sen. Susan Paddack, would increase the state minimum salary schedule for teachers by $3,000. It would increase the maximum mentor teacher stipend from $500 to $1,000, increase the bonus for National Board Certification from $5,000 to $7,500 in fiscal year 2007 and to $10,000 beginning in 2008. It would increase the difference in pay between teachers with bachelors degrees and masters degrees from $1,200 to $4,200 and to $6,200 for a Ph.D.

SB 1921 by Sen. Brian Crain, would modify the Oklahoma Quality Jobs Incentive Leverage Act to allow issuance for development of an aerospace parts manufacturing business.

SB 267 by Sen. Johnnie Crutchfield, would provide for investment of monies in the County Bridge and Road Improvement Fund.

SB 1318 by Sen. Randy Bass, would authorize the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide a program for training nurse aids to be certified by the Health Department.

SB 1459 by Sen. Bernest Cain, would require schools to establish fitness programs.

SB 1357 by Sen. Jim Wilson, would remove the date restriction on employment for temporary firefighters employed by the Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry.

SB 1463 by Sen. Charles Wyrick, would allow funds appropriated to the Department of Environmental Quality to be used to assist public entities responding to hazards posed by mining.


• Other measures approved by House committees Tuesday include the following:


SB 1657 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, would allow electronic signatures collected by the Post Office to satisfy requirements for income assignment for child support purposes. The measure was amended to include language that would create the Common Sense in the Courtroom Act of 2006, to enact lawsuit reform.

SB 1461 by Sen. Bernest Cain, would require the State Board of Education to developsoftware for schools to track statistics relating to physical fitness.


Wednesday, April 19

• The Senate met Wednesday, approving a number of bills. Among the measures approved were the following:


HB 2512 by Sen. Cal Hobson, would authorize income tax credits of up to 40 percent for wind or photovoltaic energy system expenditures on residential property, and 10 percent credits for installation of geothermal heating and cooling systems on residential property.

HB 2363 by Sen. Nancy Riley, would require that a student be allowed to transfer to a school district where their parent or guardian is employed as a teacher.

HB 2461 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm, would provide a sales tax exemption for the sale of personal property to the surviving wife or husband of a person who has been honorably discharged from the U.S. Armed Forces and is entitled to 100 percent disability compensation.

HB 2480 by Sen. Mary Easley, would establish a seven year statute of limitations for prosecuting the crime of soliciting murder.

HB 2490 by Sen. Glenn Coffee, would prohibit waiver of the fee charged for serving notice.

HB 2552 by Sen. Randy Bass, would authorize the Capitol Improvement Authority to issue $200 million in revenue bonds for deferred maintenance for state-owned property.

HB 2598 by Sen. Owen Laughlin, would create the Child Support Modification Program Act. The Act would establish guidelines for reviewing child support payment orders.

HB 2609 by Sen. Charles Laster, would allow courts to place electronic monitoring devices on defendants in domestic abuse cases where a protective order is involved.

HB 2653 by Sen. Ted Fisher, creates the Oklahoma Opportunity Fund Enabling Act of 2006.

HB 2655 by Sen. Daisy Lawler, would create the Oklahoma Farm-to-School Program, to provide Oklahoma school districts with locally grown foods.

HB 2807 by Sen. Earl Garrison, would create the Semipublic Community Act to allow municipal governing bodies to establish semipublic communities.

HB 2813 by Sen. Frank Shurden, would increase from $50,000 to $100,000 the amount of liability insurance required for dangerous dog owners.

HB 2934 by Sen. Cliff Aldridge, would allow broker-dealers registered with the Securities Exchange Commission to act as custodians for funds.

HB 3020 by Sen. Tom Adelson, would modify requirements for membership to the Oklahoma Water Resources Board. The bill would create four districts covering the state, and at least one member of the board must be engaged in the thermal electric generation industry or the independent oil and gas industry.

HB 3116 by Sen. Ted Fisher, would mandate the release of Oklahoma Tax Commission information by cigarette wholesalers and tribal tobacco shops.

HJR 1010 by Sen. Nancy Riley, would create the Oklahoma Task Force to Stop Sexual Violence.

• Senate Committees did not meet Wednesday.

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

SB 1444 by Sen. Richard Lerblance, would require the Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry to be the official animal identification agency and the official premises identification agency.

SB 876 by Sen. Cliff Branan, would create the Commercial Real Estate Broker Lien Act.

SB 2039 by Sen. Todd Lamb, would authorize wireless service providers to trace the location of cell phones or towers in the event of an emergency.

SB 1394 by Sen. Susan Paddack, would create the Health Care Workforce Resources Act, to coordinate statewide efforts to meet the demands of the healthcare workforce.

SB 1400 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm, would create the Oklahoma Retired Police Officer Revolving Fund for the Oklahoma Police Pension and Retirement System.

SB 1481 by Sen. Jim Wilson, would require the State Board of Agriculture, Food and Forestry to monitor forest resources.

SB 1795 by Sen. Susan Paddack, would require schools to perform vision screenings on students in kindergarten through third grade.

SB 1765 by Sen. Nancy Riley, would specify rules for the treatment of youthful offenders during the process of arrest and court hearings.

SB 1934 by Sen. Kenneth Corn, would require the Department of Corrections to manage livestock and agricultural services, to ensure optimum food service.

SB 1655 by Sen. Debbe Leftwich, would provide an income tax exemption for benefits received by federal civil service retirees.

SB 1752 by Sen. Jeff Rabon, would authorize the Corporation Commission to require employees and applicants to provide fingerprints for background checks.

• The following measures were approved on Wednesday by House Committees:

SB 1657 by Sen. Glenn Coffee, would establish a limit on non-economic damages at $300,000.

SB 1294 by Sen. Tom Adelson, would modify requirements for the Pilot Premium Assistance Program to assist small businesses with the costs of providing insurance.

SB 1909 by Sen. Kenneth Corn, would authorize the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation to increase fees for fingerprint analysis.

SB 1390 by Sen. Debbe Leftwich, would provide that county bridge and road repair projects my be funded by any unused monies in that county’s account in the County Road and Bridge Improvement Fund.

SB 1748 by Sen. Randy Bass, would create the Identity Theft Protection Act, providing penalties and updating language.

Thursday, April 20

• The following measures were among those approved on the Senate floor Thursday:

HB 1231 by Sen. Mike Johnson, would modify penalties for child neglect and child abuse.

HB 2756 by Sen. Owen Laughlin, would update the Teacher Due Process Act of 1990, establishing abandonment of duty as cause for termination.

HB 2362 by Sen. Cliff Aldridge, would modify fuel tax exemptions for school districts.

HB 2955 by Sen. Owen Laughlin, would require the Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry to establish an independent agricultural tourism organization.

HB 2983 by Sen. Earl Garrison, would expand the powers and duties of the State Board of Career Education and Technology.

HB 2376 by Sen. Earl Garrison, would Create the Oklahoma Livestock Industry Development Act of 2006.

HB 2844 by Sen. Tom Adelson, would enact the Drug Reimportation Act to authorize the Board of Pharmacy to designate certain Canadian pharmacies to fill prescriptions for Oklahoma residents.


• The Senate will reconvene Monday, April 24, at 10:00 a.m.

Other News


• Sen. Frank Shurden was honored by his fellow members Tuesday, as his legislative career of nearly 28 years winds to a close due to term limits. His fellow members shared their memories of serving with Shurden, a man they honored for his principals and his dedication on behalf of working people and rural Oklahoma. The resolution read that he would be remembered as a Senator who fought in a principled manner for his beliefs, for working people, and for rural Oklahoma, and who accepted both his victories and his defeats with grace.

• On Monday, the Senate honored researcher Gloria Farley of Heavener. Farley spent decades researching evidence of pre-Columbian artifacts and petroglyphs throughout Oklahoma. In 1970, her research and efforts led to the protection of the Heavener Runestone as a state park.

• Wednesday, April 19, marked the 11-year anniversary of the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building. A ceremony was held at the Oklahoma National Memorial, attended by survivors, legislators and citizens.

• Results of a federal study released on Monday showed Oklahoma to be among the top states in the nation in excluding the academic testing scores of minority students in order to meet the demands of the No Child Left Behind Act.

Index