The committee consideration process is in full swing at the Oklahoma State Capitol. Before bills can be scheduled for a hearing on the Senate floor, they must first pass out of a committee with a simple majority vote of the committee members.
It was a good week for my bills in committee. All the bills that were scheduled passed; some will proceed to the Appropriations Committee since they have a fiscal impact, and some will be available for possible consideration on the Senate floor.
Senate Bill 7 was heard and passed in the General Government Committee on Monday. SB 7 requires a comprehensive inventory and status reporting of all state-owned properties and their value, along with recommendations for the sale, transfer or disposal of those properties that are unused or underused if such action is determined to be in the best interests of the state. This bill was assigned to Appropriations.
Senate Bill 375 would make it legal in Oklahoma for horse meat to be processed for export. The committee substitution to this bill was heard and passed in the Agriculture and Rural Development Committee on Monday afternoon. This bill is now available for consideration on the Senate floor.
Senate Bill 676 was heard and passed in the Transportation Committee on Tuesday. SB 676 would move truck enforcement from the Oklahoma Corporation Commission to the Department of Public Safety. At the interim study this year, we found that OCC officers don’t have the authority to put dangerous trucks or drivers out of service. This bill was assigned to the Appropriations Committee.
Co-authored by Representative John Bennett, Senate Bill 16 deals with black bear tags. It was heard and passed in the Appropriations and Budget Subcommittee on Natural Resources on Wednesday. This bill simply honors the current contract between the state and the license holder. It says that the bear has to be tagged, but that the lifetime license holder does not have to pay for their tag, though all future lifetime license owners will have to pay for tags.
Senate Bills 71 (co-authored by Representative John Bennett) and 72 were both heard and passed in the Public Safety Committee meeting on Thursday. SB 71 authorizes the Department of Public Safety to issue an annual vehicle permit with certain provisions to a specific vehicle, for the movement of oversize or overweight loads that cannot reasonably be dismantled. SB 72 was a request bill that says, “No person shall willfully interfere with the lawful performance of any police dog or police horse,” and establishes penalties for such acts. Both bills were referred to the Appropriations Committee.
Some of my bills are still pending a committee hearing; I hope to be able to report they will be heard in committee soon.
Until next time,
Senator Mark Allen