Oklahoma’s 54th Legislature of the First Session met this week and the Capitol is abuzz with activity in both the House of Representatives and the State Senate. Bills were introduced and assigned to committees in both Houses.
Now that bills have been assigned, they must have a House and Senate author before they can be heard in committee, so we have all been busy trying to match bill subject matters with other interested legislators. I have agreed to be the Senate Author of several of Representative John Bennett’s bills, as he has mine, and I look forward to following their progress.
I have been assigned to the following Senate committees: Agriculture and Wildlife, Judiciary, General Government and Transportation (A&B Subcommittee) and Insurance; and I have been appointed Vice-Chair of the Veterans and Military Affairs Committee.
I anticipate a busy session this year. The Senate Republican Caucus on Tuesday released their agenda for the 2013 legislative session. “Senate Republicans are intensely focused on creating the best business climate possible,” said President Pro Tem Bingman. “Pro-growth policies are the guiding light for our caucus agenda – whether we’re talking about fixing our runaway workers’ compensation system, reducing the tax burden on Oklahomans, or putting additional dollars in the classroom.”
Back in October 2012, I was contacted by The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) and requested to serve as Vice-Chair of NCSL’s Energy, Transportation and Agriculture Committee. I accepted that appointment and Nikki and I traveled to the NCSL 2012 Fall Forum in December, where we discussed fuel efficiency standards, the multi-agency effort to respond to the drought crisis, and critical energy issues facing states as they work to maintain a reliable electric grid in the face of emerging technologies.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article; I look forward to updating you about what is happening here at the Oklahoma State Capitol during this year’s session.
Until next time,
Senator Mark Allen