Press Releases

Showing: December, 2004

A state senator called on Gov. Brad Henry to conduct comprehensive background checks of potential commissioners on the state’s new Lottery Commission.

“With the potential for corruption in gambling enterprises, we must ensure that Oklahoma’s new Lottery Commission is composed of individuals of unquestionable character and integrity,” stated Sen. Owen Laughlin, R-Woodward.

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A group of Oklahoma school children think it is high time one of the state’s naturally occurring gems gets official recognition—and State Senator Kathleen Wilcoxson is working to make sure the gem and the students have a chance to shine. She’s filed legislation to make Selenite Crystal the state’s official gemstone.
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State Senator Randy Brogdon announced Wednesday that he will introduce a constitutional amendment to limit the future growth of the state government’s budget, known as the “Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights” or TABOR.

“Over the past ten years, state government has grown at an unsustainable rate of 89%, while the private sector has only grown 65%,” stated Brogdon, R-Owasso. “The TABOR amendment would limit the annual growth in the state budget to the level of inflation plus the state’s population growth, ensuring that the state’s budget does not grow faster than the family budget.”

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Appropriations Committee Chairman Mike Morgan announced Tuesday that the Appropriations sub-committees in the Oklahoma State Senate will begin work on the FY 2006 state budget in the next two weeks.

“We’ve got a tremendous amount of work ahead of us and we’ve got seven new sub-committee chairpersons who are eager to get to work on what could be one of the most challenging appropriations processes in recent years,” said Morgan, D-Stillwater.
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Pollina Report Shows Need for Reforms
Oklahoma remains near the bottom in job growth nationally

A ranking of the top ten “business friendly” states by the Pollina Corporate Real Estate, Inc., shows that Oklahoma is in dire need of economic reforms, a Republican senator said Tuesday.

“We should all be promoting the positives of this report and our top ten ranking, but Oklahoma’s lack of workers comp reform, lack of comprehensive lawsuit reform, and our high income tax rate are big reasons why we still rank near the bottom nationally in job growth and wages,” stated Sen. Scott Pruitt, R-Broken Arrow.

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(Oklahoma City) Saying it’s only natural to continue to build on the advances enacted by the Legislature in the last two years, Senate President Pro Tempore Cal Hobson announced Friday that he will support Governor Henry’s continued work on tort reform in the coming legislative session.

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(Oklahoma City) Oklahoma’s continued inclusion in a national report released this week as one of the top 10 “business friendly” states didn’t just happen, a veteran state senator said Thursday.

Senator Jeff Rabon, D-Hugo, said the state’s outstanding showing in the annual rankings by Pollina Corporate Real Estate Inc. is a result of work by the Legislature to foster an environment to grow existing Oklahoma businesses and attract new firms.

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(Oklahoma City) Senate President Pro Tempore Cal Hobson and House Speaker Todd Hiett announced Thursday an agreement on deadlines for the First Session of the 50th Oklahoma Legislature.

“These deadlines provide a framework for the exercise of democracy, in which critical issues are debated and decided by the people’s representatives. Oklahoma’s citizens can be confident that the new bi-partisan government will work,” said Hiett, R-Kellyville.

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State Sen. Jim Reynolds will be on hand next week when a new permanent exhibit about the U.S.S. Oklahoma is dedicated at the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial Museum in Honolulu, Hawaii. The unveiling will be on December 6, 2004, the eve of the 63rd anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

“About a million and a half people visit the museum every year. They know all about the Arizona, but there are too many people who don’t know that the U.S.S. Oklahoma sustained the second largest loss of life, with 429 men killed. This exhibit will finally help tell their story,” Reynolds said.

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“If my particular bill were to be passed, I would sign it. I was serious about that effort last year." -- Gov. Brad Henry, discussing the possibility of future lawsuit reform legislation in The Journal Record, 12/02/2004.

State Capitol, Oklahoma City – New Senate Republican Leader Glenn Coffee, R-Oklahoma City, said he welcomes comments by Gov. Brad Henry that he would sign new lawsuit reform legislation in the next legislative session.

“It is very welcome news that Gov. Henry now seems willing to ignore his moratorium and support new lawsuit reform.

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