The Oklahoma Senate

Week In Review
Monday, Feb. 16 to Thursday, Feb. 19, 2009

Monday, February 16


• With attention focused on committee activity, the Senate approved no substantive legislation on Monday.


• Several measures were approved by Senate committees Monday.

-SB 4 by Sen. John Ford, requires voters to provide proof of identity when voting.

-SB 413 by Sen. Bill Brown, modifies the definition of “consumer” under the Telemarketer Restriction Act to include any business association, partnership, firm, corporation and its affiliates or subsidiaries, or any other business entity.

-SB 1146 by Sen. Clark Jolley, modifies language related to certain reports by manufacturers and wholesalers of intoxicating beverages.

-SB 334 by Sen. Harry Coates, requires licensed pawnbrokers seeking renewal to submit to the administrator of consumer affairs evidence that a specific number of continuing education hours has been completed within the last 12 months.

-SB 645 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm, increases the basic education and continuing education time requirements for a licensed home inspector and modifies an exemption to the Home Inspection Licensing Act.

-SB 665 by Sen. Harry Coates, creates the Oklahoma Online Construction Registry Act.

-SB 848 by Sen. Cliff Branan, authorizes the Oklahoma Used Motor Vehicle and Parts Commission to assess a fine not to exceed $100 against a used motor vehicle dealer who sells an extended service warranty to a purchaser but fails to provide a copy of the warranty to a purchaser or fails to disclose who the third party issuer will be.

-SB 883 by Sen. Charles Laster, prohibits telemarketers from making calls or causing calls to be made to any consumer on the no-telemarketing sales call registry on Sundays.

-SB 884 by Sen. Randy Brogdon, repeals the authority of the Oklahoma Department of Commerce to aid an international trade processing authority in developing an international trade processing center and related language.

-SB 1012 by Sen. Harry Coates, creates the Private Construction Progress Payment Act, requiring an owner to make progress payments to a contractor on all private construction contracts lasting more than 60 days.

-SB 1182 by Sen. Randy Brogdon, creates the Oklahoma Uniform Building Code Commission, within the Oklahoma Department of Commerce.

-SB 668 by Sen. Cliff Aldridge, increases from $250 to $500 the value of equipment for disposal which must be approved by a resolution of a board of county commissioners.

-SB 684 by Sen. Roger Ballenger, clarifies language related to county boards of adjustment, lowering the quorum requirement to four members.

-SB 685 by Sen. Roger Ballenger, eliminates the cabinet-secretary-notice-approval requirement for reductions in force if the appointing authority is governed by an elected official.

-SB 805 by Sen. Todd Lamb, creates the Oklahoma New Development Impact Fee Act.

-SB 853 by Sen. Mike Schulz, increases the minimum construction costs of culverts, bridges and grade-and-drainage projects to be accomplished by a board of commissioners that require engineering plans and specifications to be prepared by the county engineer.

-SB 871 by Sen. Steve Russell, modifies membership of the Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Advisory Council.

-SB 1066 by Sen. Bryce Marlatt, increases from $5,000 to $10,000 the maximum allowable purchase amount that can be paid by county purchasing agents in cases where the low bidder cannot fulfill the bid contract and the purchasing agent is forced to purchase from the next lowest bidder.

-SJR 12 by Sen. Randy Brogdon, proposes a constitutional amendment to limit the term of Governor, Lieutenant Governor, State Auditor and Inspector, Attorney General, State Treasurer, Commissioner of Labor, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Insurance Commissioner and Corporation Commissioner to eight years.

-SJR 13 by Sen. Randy Brogdon, proposes a constitutional amendment to decrease the number of required signatures to propose a legislative measure from 8 percent to 5 percent of legal voters.

-SB 852 by Sen. Randy Brogdon, requires that the gist statement of each initiative petition and referendum petition be submitted to the Secretary of State at the time the proponent files a copy of the petition with the Secretary of State.

-SB 800 by Sen. Anthony Sykes, requires that the gist statement of each initiative petition and referendum petition be submitted to the Secretary of State at the time the proponent files a copy of the petition with the Secretary of State.

-SB 458 by Sen. Cliff Branan, authorizes county election board secretaries to transmit balloting materials by e-mail under certain conditions.

-SB 692 by Sen. John Ford, clarifies language related to the notice that it is illegal for a notary public to charge a fee to notarize an official absentee ballot affidavit.

-SB 718 by Sen. Don Barrington, modifies the time period given persons honorably discharged or on officially authorized leave from the U.S. Uniformed Services or their spouses to register to vote, allowing such individuals who returned home within 90 days preceding an election to cast a provisional ballot.

-SB 783 by Sen. Anthony Sykes, requires counties sending propositions with ballot titles to the voters for approval to submit the measure to the county district attorney.

-SB 798 by Sen. Anthony Sykes, establishes penalties for the business organization involved in prohibited actions in which state officers or employees exercise discretionary or decision-making authority in awarding a privatization contract.

-SB 872 by Sen. Glenn Coffee, changes the date of the primary election to the second Tuesday in June from the last Tuesday in July.

-SB 874 by Sen. Glenn Coffee, requires elections for the offices of district attorney and county sheriff be conducted on a nonpartisan basis beginning with the 2012 election cycle.

-SJR 25 by Sen. Glenn Coffee, proposes a constitutional amendment adjusting membership of the Apportionment Commission.

-SB 697 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm, creates the Children’s Cabinet.

-SB 1111 by Sen. Judy Eason McIntyre, creates the Educational Accountability Reform Act.

-SB 834 by Sen. John Ford, creates the School District Empowerment Program to be administered by the State Department of Education.

-SB 268 by Sen. John Ford, directs a district board of education of schools that have been identified for school improvement for four consecutive years to implement an alternative governance arrangement.

-SB 676 by Sen. Susan Paddack, clarifies language related to end-of-instruction tests.

-SB 1168 by Sen. John Ford, clarifies language related to the Achieving Classroom Excellence Act of 2005.

-SB 586 by Sen. John Ford, allows federally recognized Indian tribes to sponsor charter schools when the school is located on property in Oklahoma that is held in trust by the U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureau of Indian Affairs for the benefit of the tribe.

-SB 582 by Sen. Clark Jolley, requires the State Department of Education to issue alternative placement teaching certificates to individuals who meet the requirements of the U.S. Department of Defense’s Troops to Teachers program and individuals who meet certain other requirements defined by statute.

-SB 641 by Sen. Bill Brown, prohibits alcohol on all public high school campuses.

-SB 867 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, changes the first school year for students entering the ninth grade from 2008-2009 to 2010-2011 in which every student shall demonstrate mastery of the state academic content standards in specific subject areas.

-SB 880 by Sen. John Ford, eliminates the minimum membership number for an organization to be considered a retired teachers’ organization by the Oklahoma Teachers’ Retirement System and establishes that such organizations must be organized for the purpose of representing retired teachers and providing member benefits.

-SB 971 by Sen. John Sparks, modifies language related to the development of professional development programs.

-SJR 34 by Sen. Bryce Marlatt, proposes a constitutional amendment extending from five to seven years the length of agricultural leases that the Commissioners of the Land Office may allow on trust property.

• The House convened Monday and approved numerous bills including the following:


-HB 1474 by Rep. Jason Murphey, repeals language related to the annual compensation for the Labor Commissioner.

-HB 1464 by Rep. R.C. Pruett, prohibits individuals from hunting or taking black bear without a license from the director of wildlife conservation.

-HB 1803 by Rep. Steve Martin, allows wrecker support vehicles to use flashing red or blue lights or a combination at the scene of an emergency.

-HB 1368 by Rep. Glen Bud Smithson, allows driving in a lane other than the right-hand lane when traffic conditions or flow or road configuration require the use of lanes other than the right-hand lane to maintain traffic conditions.

-HB 1760 by Rep. John Enns, removes the requirement that tests of blood, breath, saliva or urine specimens for intoxicating substances other than alcohol identify the presence and concentration of the intoxicating substance and allowing the test to identify the presence of the intoxicating substance.

-HB 1466 by Rep. Mike Jackson, creates a misdemeanor for entering into a valid residential rental agreement and then maliciously, willfully or recklessly allowing the damage or defacement of the property if the destruction caused is valued at less than $5,000, and creates a felony for actions causing damage valued at $5,000 or more.

-HB 1893 by Rep. Pam Peterson, authorizes the Department of Human Services’ Aging Services Division to work collaboratively with other national, state and local agencies and community groups to establish a single point-of-entry concept for aging and disability groups in Oklahoma, referred to as an Aging and Disability Resource Consortium Initiative.

-HB 1936 by Rep. Weldon Watson, allows group homes to be established as parts of a court’s juvenile bureau.


• House committees met Monday and approved numerous measures, including the following:

-HB 2249 by Rep. Randy Terrill, modifies income qualification calculations for the Oklahoma Higher Learning Education Program.

-HB 1043 by Rep. Earl Sears, creates the Oklahoma Medical Loan Repayment Program to provide, subject to the availability of funds, educational loan repayment assistance of up to $25,000 per year for five years for up to six Oklahoma licensed primary care physicians per year who agree to establish a practice in a community approved by the Physician Manpower Training Commission.

-HB 1301 by Rep. Fred Jordan, grants students who are members of the Oklahoma Army or Air National Guard, a reserve element of the U.S. Armed Forces, or active-duty service members stationed in Oklahoma eligible for a 100 percent tuition and fee refund if the student is required to leave school as a result of deployment or mobilization orders.

-HB 1422 by Rep. Eric Proctor, provides free tuition to institutions within the Oklahoma State System of Higher Education for dependents of deceased service members.

-HB 1737 by Rep. Ron Peters, establishes the Oklahoma School for the Visual and Performing Arts and sets up a board of trustees.

-HB 1918 by Rep. Steve Kouplen, provides an income tax exemption for payments received by a person as an award for participation in a competitive livestock show event.

-HB 1336 by Rep. Dennis Bailey, provides an annual $25,000 income tax deduction for health care providers who work full-time in medically underserved areas for up to five years.

-HB 1485 by Rep. Dale DeWitt, modifies apportionment of the revenue collected under the Oklahoma Vehicle License and Registration Act to the General Revenue Fund and makes a 17.24 percent apportionment to counties for constructing and maintaining county highways.

-HB 1341 by Rep. Neil Brannon, increases from 5 percent to 6 percent an apportionment of income tax revenue to the Teachers’ Retirement System Dedicated Revenue Revolving Fund for fiscal year 2010 and subsequent years.

-HB 1374 by Rep. Purcy Walker, creates the Oklahoma Renewable Energy Incentives For Schools Act.

-HB 1127 by Rep. Scott Martin, appropriates $5 million to the Oklahoma State University Medical Authority Disbursing Fund.

-HB 1948 by Rep. Chris Benge, provides an income tax credit for taxpayers who install geothermal heating and cooling systems on residential and nonresidential property between tax years beginning after Dec. 31, 2009, and ending Dec. 31, 2014.

-HB 1949 by Rep. Chris Benge, extends a tax credit for investments in qualified clean-burning motor vehicle property.

-HB 1295 by Rep. Jason Murphey, adds a definition of “reissue” as it relates to the inability of a person to obtain a professional license if he/she is not in compliance with Oklahoma income tax laws.

-HB 2174 by Rep. Jason Nelson, modifies language related to custody of children.

-HB 2032 by Rep. Kris Steele, directs the Office of Juvenile System Oversight to monitor agencies not licensed by the Department of Human Services’ residential and agency licensing unit.

-HB 1742 by Rep. Ron Peters, provides a definition of “child care center” under the Oklahoma Child Care Facilities Licensing Act to mean a facility that provides care and supervision for children and that operates for more than 30 hours per week.


Tuesday, February 17

• The Senate met Tuesday and approved the following legislation:

-SB 281 by Sen. Tom Ivester, exempts from franchise tax entities with a tax liability of $500 or less.

-SB 585 by Sen. John Ford, permits public educational institutions and their employees to keep confidential campus security plans.

-SB 903 by Sen. Randy Bass, states that a licensed wrecker operator is not liable for damage to a vehicle, vessel or cargo that obstructs the normal movement of traffic or creates a hazard and is removed at the request of law enforcement, unless the operator fails to exercise reasonable care or exhibits willful or malicious conduct.

• Senate committees approved the following bills on Tuesday:

-SB 1160 by Sen. Anthony Sykes, eliminates the requirement that the Department of Public Safety provide an alternative method of testing for an applicant for a Class D driver license who is eighteen (18) years of age or older and who can only understand Spanish.

-SB 1166 by Sen. Clark Jolley, creates the Regional Emergency Nine-One-One Services Act.

-SB 1153 by Sen. Don Barrington, expands the duties and responsibilities of the Oklahoma Office of Homeland Security to include interoperable public safety communications planning within the state of Oklahoma.

-SB 1192 by Sen. Don Barrington, establishes a Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training Regional Academy Pilot Program to provide localized, community law enforcement agencies the ability to send law enforcement officers to basic police course training closer to their geographic location.

-SB 979 by Sen. Bill Brown, makes the Oklahoma Used Motor Vehicle and Parts Commission responsible for issuing licenses to boat dealers.

-SB 1185 by Sen. Don Barrington, modifies revocation period of driving privileges.

-SB 1206 by Sen. Bill Brown, adds the Oklahoma and Tulsa city-county health departments to the list of jurisdictions under the Oklahoma Intrastate Mutual Aid Compact.

-SB 1156 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, designates English as the official common language of Oklahoma.

-SB 565 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm, allows only the condemnee, rather than either party, to file a written demand for jury trial for land acquisition for railroad cases.

-SB 609 by Sen. Todd Lamb, reduces from 10 to seven the number of judges on the Workers Compensation Court.

-SB 1161 by Sen. Cliff Aldridge, authorizes the Department of Public Safety to determine the amount of security necessary for damage judgments in certain collisions.

-SB 698 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, permits the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry to take into possession any vehicle, implement of husbandy, farming equipment or farm implement and any and all livestock killed, taken, shipped or possessed in violation of the Agricultural Code.

-SB 1105 by Sen. Mike Mazzei, defines certificate of title as a certificate of title created by a governmental agency of the state.

-SB 1132 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, creates the Uniform Limited Partnership Act of 2009.

-SB 932 by Sen. Glenn Coffee, allows Oklahoma residents age 21 or older who are under the protection of a protective order issued under the Protection from Domestic Abuse Act to request a temporary emergency concealed weapons license from a county sheriff.

-SB 912 by Sen. John Sparks, prohibits nuisance actions from being brought against agricultural activities on farm or ranch land that has lawfully been in operation for one year or more.

-SB 1073 by Sen. Brian Crain, clarifies language related to judgment liens for creditors.

-SB 1142 by Sen. Constance Johnson, requires that a person complete all terms and conditions of a sentence for a misdemeanor in order to request expungement.

-SB 1234 by Sen. Clark Jolley, establishes that an Affidavit of Exempt Status Under the Workers’ Compensation Act must be notarized.

-SB 653 by Sen. Anthony Sykes, modifies the type of report and subsequent procedures required in a judicial review provided by the Department of Corrections.

-SB 991 by Sen. Glenn Coffee, modifies language related to the Uniform Commercial Code.

-SJR 10 by Sen. Randy Brogdon, claims Oklahoma sovereignty under the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and serves notice to the federal government to cease and desist mandates that are beyond the scope of its constitutionally delegated powers.

-SJR 11 by Sen. Randy Brogdon, rescinds, repeals, cancels, nullifies and supersedes any and all applications by the Legislature to U.S. Congress to call a convention to propose amendments to the U.S. Constitution.

-SB 356 by Sen. Tom Adelson, modifies language related to the Oklahoma Antitrust Reform Act.

-SB 453 by Sen. Mike Schulz, allows damages to be collected for wrongful injuries to crops or livestock.

-SB 672 by Sen. Brian Crain, requires that the appeal of a decision of the district court in a civil action related to a person’s incarceration or supervision while in custody of the Department of Corrections, a county or municipal jail or a private prison, adverse to a municipal, county or state employee or a person employed by a private prison, be directly to the appropriate appellate court without further motions.

-SB 695 by Sen. Jim Wilson, exempts state environmental agencies and public utilities from releasing any confidential maps.

-SB 745 by Sen. Clark Jolley, modifies language describing persons “qualified” in the use of an automated external defibrillator for purposes of granting civil liability immunity.

-SB 789 by Sen. Jonathan Nichols, creates a misdemeanor for offenses of knowingly making or uttering a false statement in the course of an internal agency investigation.

-SB 793 by Sen. Anthony Sykes, makes in unlawful for private employers to ask any applicant for employment whether he/she owns or possesses a firearm.

-SB 796 by Sen. Randy Brogdon, prohibits transitional living facilities that house sex offenders or persons convicted of a capital offense from locating within 2,500 feet of a public or private school, state training school or residential neighborhood.

-SB 885 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, creates the Revised Uniform Unincorporated Nonprofit Association Act.

-SB 901 by Sen. Bill Brown, directs the Oklahoma Employment Security Commission to determine the average weekly wage in the state every year.

-SB 988 by Sen. Brian Crain, allows an employer who pays at least 75 percent of an employer’s health insurance premium for medical expenses to require an employee to seek resolution of a workers’ compensation claim through mediation only if the annual health care deductible required by the employee does not exceed $1,000 and the co-pay does not exceed 20 percent of the charge for medical services.

-SB 1029 by Sen. Steve Russell, requires the attorney or person facilitating a direct placement adoption of a minor in the state to prepare an adoption full disclosure statement.

-SB 1075 by Sen. Brian Crain, modifies requirements for review of an offender’s eligibility for drug court.

-SB 1103 by Sen. Glenn Coffee, creates the Use of Force for the Protection of the Unborn Act.

-SB 1115 by Sen. Anthony Sykes, requires that local rules and administrative orders of a district court shall not conflict with any statutes of this state or any rules of a superior court.

-SB 1124 by Sen. Anthony Sykes, permits the Legislature by concurrent resolution to disapprove any existing rule of the Code of Judicial Conduct.

-SB 1231 by Sen. Clark Jolley, creates the Task Force on the Mutualization or Privatization of CompSource Oklahoma.


• The House convened Tuesday and approved the following measures:

-HB 1410 by Rep. Jason Murphey, increases from $2,500 to $5,000 the maximum acquisition allowed by state agencies conducting their own internal purchasing procedures.

-HB 2266 by Rep. Mike Christian, exempts the state, in criminal cases where the defense has requested a disclosure of evidence, from having to provide an Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation rap sheet.

-HB 1004 by Rep. Danny Morgan, modifies the definition of “refrigeration system” as it relates to the Mechanical Licensing Act.

-HB 1059 by Rep. Bill Nations, allows one or more multiple dentists to use a trade name.

-HB 1065 by Rep. George Faught, directs the Oklahoma State Board of Health to develop rules to post on the Department of Health’s Web site a consumer guide or similar resource to assist individuals and families in understanding the services provided by assisted living centers and to compare and select facilities.

HB 2055 by Rep. Mike Thompson, states that each oil and gas interest owner shall be granted a security interest, as a secured party, to secure the obligations of a first purchaser to pay the sales price.

-HB 1079 by Rep. Lucky Lamons, creates a misdemeanor for persons or entities that sell or offer a spoofing calling card or spoofing service to a caller who uses the card or service to insert false information into a caller identification system with the intent of misleading, defrauding or deceiving the call recipient.

-HB 1791 by Rep. Chuck Hoskin, grants all active-duty U.S. military members who are currently Oklahoma residents free admission to all state-owned or state-operated parks and museums and requires a valid Oklahoma driver license or state photo identification plus valid military identification card for free admission.

-HB 1865 by Rep. Jeff Hickman, allows residents to purchase rifles, shotguns and ammunition from an out-of-state dealer, regardless of whether it is in a contiguous state.

-HB 1999 by Rep. Harold Wright, grants the county election board the authority to determine if a ballot is valid and if the ballot should be counted in conducting a recount.


• House committees met Tuesday approved the following measures:


-HB 1595 by Rep. Daniel Sullivan, prohibits a person from knowingly or recklessly performing an abortion with knowledge that the pregnant woman is seeking the abortion solely on account of the unborn child’s gender.

-HB 1095 by Rep. Todd Thomsen, prohibits athlete agents from communicating with student athletes who are ineligible to be drafted.

-HB 1842 by Rep. Rex Duncan, creates the Oklahoma Licensed Interpreter Act and the Oklahoma Board of Licensed Interpreters for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing.

-HB 1028 by Rep. Doug Cox, directs an insurer to list a provider as payee on any payment instrument sent to the insured for payment if the insured elected to receive medical treatment from a provider outside of a preferred provider network.

-HB 1021 by Rep. George Faught, limits the maximum amount a plaintiff or claimant may receive in civil actions to recover damages arising from a vehicle accident if the plaintiff or claimant is not in compliance with the Compulsory Insurance Law.

-HB 1003 by Rep. Sally Kern, modifies language related to exemptions granted under the Workers’ Compensation Act.

-HB 1576 by Rep. Charles Joyner, defines “amateur mixed martial artist,” “amateur mixed martial arts,” “combative sports” and “professional mixed martial arts” under the Oklahoma State Athletic Commission.

-HB 1821 by Rep. Steve Martin, prohibits individuals convicted of a felony involving forgery, embezzlement, obtaining money under false pretense, extortion, conspiracy to defraud, fraud or similar offenses from obtaining a real estate license.

-HB 1777 by Rep. Tad Jones, prohibits design-build and at-risk construction management project delivery methods from being used for projects constructed by a state agency.

-HB 2089 by Rep. Dan Kirby, requires sheriffs to reimburse health care providers for medical care and treatment for inmates in county jails according to the Oklahoma Medicaid Fee Schedule.

-HB 1800 by Rep. Marian Cooksey, modifies language related to the penalty assessments collected by municipal courts.

-HB 1420 by Rep. Edward Cannaday, authorizes municipalities with population of less than 5,000 to employ a part-time city planner.

-HB 1470 by Rep. Mike Sanders, increases from $100 to $1,000 the maximum award a board of county commissioners may offer for the arrest, conviction or evidence leading to the arrest or conviction of any person stealing or defacing county road signs or other county property.

-HB 1750 by Rep. Scott Martin, creates the Nuclear Energy Incentive Act.

-HB 1320 by Rep. Mike Reynolds, creates the Affordable Energy Act.

-HB 1890 by Rep. Phil Richardson, establishes a $25 fee for a senior citizen lifetime combination hunting and fishing license.

-HB 1897 by Rep. Doug Cox, creates the Allied Professional Peer Assistance Program to rehabilitate allied medical professionals whose competency may be compromised because of the abuse of drugs or alcohol.


Wednesday, February 18

• The Senate passed the following measures on Wednesday:

-SB 450 by Sen. Kenneth Corn, allows the hunting and taking of black bear with a license from the Wildlife Conservation director and directs the Wildlife Conservation Commission to decide the open season, bag limits and territorial limits.

-SB 506 by Sen. Don Barrington, designates the Lawton Rangers as the official riding club of the state.

-SB 48 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, states that any driver license originally issued to a U.S. citizen, national or legal permanent resident alien, is to be presumed as originally issued and renewed, duplicated or re-issued without documentary proof of U.S. citizenship.

-SB 478 by Sen. Clark Jolley, requires childcare facilities to have an insurance policy that covers injury to a child due to negligence.

-SR 8 by Sen. Tom Adelson, commends President Barack Obama and Congress for their support of the State Children’s Insurance Program.

-SR 12 by Sen. Constance Johnson, congratulates former Sen. Angela Monson on her election as chair of the Oklahoma City Public Schools Board of Education.


• Senate committees passed numerous bills on Wednesday, including the following:

-SB 712 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm, directs the governor to order U.S. and Oklahoma flags on state property to be flown at half-staff on the day of the memorial service for any Oklahoman who lost his/her life while a member of the U.S. Armed Forces.

-SB1137 by Sen. Glenn Coffee, creates the Oklahoma Civil War Sesquicentennial Commission which shall be responsible for planning and supervising the events relating to the One Hundred Fiftieth Anniversary of the War Between the States.

-SB 694 by Sen. Joe Sweeden, excludes the offspring of cloned horses from the definition of horse racing.

-SB 454 by Sen. Anthony Sykes, prohibits state funds from being used by a state governmental entity to employ or retain a lobbyist.

-SB 1138 by Sen. Mary Easley, amends the definition of child endangerment to include parents or guardians knowingly letting their children ride in vehicles operated by people who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

-SB 1064 by Sen. Don Barrington, would ban from prisons cell phones and other electronic devices capable of sending or receiving electronic messages.

-SB 471 by Sen. Mary Easley, would increase the income eligibility level for the Oklahoma Higher Learning Access Program (OHLAP).

-SB 902 by Sen. Bill Brown, would lower the legal blood alcohol concentration limit for the offense of boating under the influence from 0.10 percent to 0.08 percent.

-SB 1147 by Sen. Jay Paul Gumm, would criminalize the operation of an ice cream truck by a sex offender and would require vendors to obtain an operating permit through the State Department of Health.

-SB 1102 by Sen. Jonathan Nichols, would add certain misdemeanor crimes to the list of crimes which can result in the harvesting of DNA samples.


• The House met Wednesday and approved the following measures:

-HB 1602 by Rep. Daniel Sullivan puts to a vote of the people whether to limit attorney contingency fees to 33 percent of the first $1 million recovered and 20 percent of any amount thereafter for any civil judgment or settlement.

-HB 1025 by Rep. Rex Duncan, makes it unlawful for any private employer to ask any applicant for employment information regarding whether he/she owns or possesses a firearm.

-HB 1738 by Rep. Ron Peters, broadens the definition of health care professionals who are required to report a belief of child abuse or neglect to the Department of Human Services.

-HB 1678 by Rep. Pat Ownbey, expands the definition of “volunteer medical professional” and “referred volunteer medical professional” under the Volunteer Medical Professional Services Immunity Act.

-HB 2151 by Rep. Don Armes, provides that the Legislature preempts all local laws regarding the care and handling of livestock.

-HJR 1003 by Rep. Charles Key, claims sovereignty and serves notice to the federal government to cease and desist mandates that are beyond the scope of its constitutionally delegated powers.

-HB 1052 by Rep. Earl Sears, establishes guidelines for renewing a driver license prior to the month of expiration.

• House committees approved a number of bills on Wednesday including the following:

-HB 2051 by Rep. Mike Thompson, increases from $27 per day to $28 per day the amount required to reimburse to any county, which is required to retain an inmate.

-HB 1837 by Rep. Rebecca Hamilton, authorizes the State Board of Education to establish an Inner City Schools Rescue program to recruit and train licensed or certified teachers to work in inner city schools and provide technical assistance and support to those teachers.

-HB 2227 by Rep. Shane Jett, creates the Teacher Bill of Rights Act, which states that teachers have the right to qualified immunity from frivolous lawsuits and the right to legal defense.

-HB 1451 by Rep. Ryan McMullen, allows the State Board of Education to solicit proposals for grants from the State Public Common School Building Equalization Fund.

-HB 1554 by Rep. Rex Duncan, limits sludge at a disposal site to no more than 1.5 percent of the total monthly volume of solid waste received.

-HB 1378 by Rep. Purcy Walker, modifies language related to the Oklahoma Limitation of Liability for Farming and Ranching Land Act.

-HB 2252 by Rep. Randy Terrill, strikes a provision allowing for Spanish-language driver license examinations.

-HB 1598 by Rep. Daniel Sullivan, creates the School Protection Act.

-HB 1680 by Rep. Pat Ownbey, adds counselors and the National Board for Certified Counselors to the definition within the Education Leadership Oklahoma Act.

-HB 1511 by Rep. Gus Blackwell, directs the State Board of Education to develop and implement an end-of-instruction test for “computer science”.

-HB 1867 by Rep. Jeff Hickman, exempts school counselors certified by the Department of Education from being required by local school districts to coordinate tests required by the Oklahoma School Testing Program Act.

-HJR 1042 by Rep. Randy Terrill, proposes a constitutional amendment designating English as the official language of the state.

-HJR 1009 by Rep. Sally Kern, expresses opposition to the federal Freedom of Choice Act.

-HJR 1041 by Rep. Chris Benge, proposes a constitutional amendment related to the appointment of judges.

-HJR 1026 by Rep. Colby Schwartz, proposes a constitutional amendment related to property taxes, allowing increases in the taxable market value of homestead property to increase no more than 3 percent or the rate of inflation, whichever is less.

-HB 2118 by Rep. Mike Brown, creates the Oklahoma Clean Energy Finance Program Act and the Clean Energy Program Fund.

-HB 2156 by Rep. Don Armes, directs the commissioner of labor to implement the National Fire Protection standards on fire department occupational safety and health program, standard on live fire training evolution and the rehabilitation process for members during emergency operations and training exercises.

-HB 2245 by Rep. Randy Terrill, creates the Oklahoma Criminal Illegal Alien Rapid Repatriation Act of 2009.

-HB 2246 by Rep. Randy Terrill, modifies language related to referendum and initiative petitions.


Thursday, February 19

• The Senate met Thursday and approved the following legislation:

-SB 388 by Sen. Sean Burrage, gives the right for reserve officers, deputies or firefighters who use personal vehicles for duty to purchase used emergency vehicles.

-SB 330 by Sen. Sean Burrage, modifies income eligibility for people 62 years of age or older who live in manufactured home but are not the home site landowners.

-SB 306 by Sen. Debbe Leftwich, requires municipalities to verify contractors’ general liability insurance and workers’ compensation insurance prior to issuing a residential building permit.

-SB 339 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, requires courts to make determinations at specified hearings for child placement.

-SB 285 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, adds CareerTech to the state entities that may keep certain records confidential and not subject to the Oklahoma Open Records Act.

-SB 270 by Sen. Patrick Anderson, modifies language dealing with the supervision of youthful offenders.


Other News


• Senate President Pro Tempore Glenn Coffee on Thursday announced the selection of Bob McKinney as the new Ethics Commissioner. McKinney and his wife Marguerite have been married for 21 years and have three sons. He is a graduate of the University of Arkansas with a degree in Finance. McKinney has served as Senior Executive Vice President at RCB Bank in Claremore since 2002, with over 41 years of banking experience.

• Federal assistance was approved this week for local governments and rural electric cooperatives in four counties heavily impacted by a January ice storm. The storm caused a total of $7.3 million in damage and response costs.

• The State Board of Equalization this week certified revenue estimates verifying that the Legislature would have 9 percent less revenue to spend compared to last year. Legislators will have $6.4 billion to spend in 2009. The figures reflect a budget shortfall of more than $900 million.

Index