Bill Watch: One more week for bills until next Survivor elimination

Last week, we reported that just over 1,000 bills and resolutions had survived the initial committee deadline and were still alive. The ranks of surviving bills will be thinned once again by next Thursday, March 14th, the deadline by which bills must pass out of their chamber of origin to avoid being booted off the island (for various exceptions to this rule, see our 2019 Legislative Primer).This coming week will see the sausage-grinding machine speed up considerably, as hundreds of measures vie for hearings during what are expected to be long days and nights on the House and Senate floor. Here are some key bills OK Policy continues to track closely in the areas of criminal justice, education, economic security, and taxes. [More...]

Bill Watch: You’re all dead to me!

As of today, 1,020 bills and resolutions remain active out of the 2,836 total measures introduced thus far this session. This translates to a 37 percent survival rate. In this update, we stop to mourn or celebrate some of the key pieces of legislation that missed the deadline and have been relegated to the sidelines, if not the graveyard, this session [More...]

OK PolicyCast 44: 2019 Bill Watch, Part 2

This episode of OKPolicyCast was hosted by Gene Perry and produced by Gene Perry and Jessica Vazquez, with additional production assistance from Lindsay Myers. You can subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, or RSS. The podcast theme music is by Zébre. If you have any questions… Read more “OK PolicyCast 44: 2019 Bill Watch, Part 2” [More...]

Bill Watch: Opportunities to make Oklahomans better off economically this session

This session, the Legislature will have several opportunities to improve the lives of hard-working Oklahomans and their families. Legislators have filed bills to create second chances for the justice-involved, make sure workers have paid time off to care for their own health and the health of their loved ones, and restore the full value of the Earned Income Tax Credit. All of these would be great steps toward creating an Oklahoma that appropriately values and fairly rewards the labor of its citizens. [More...]

Bill Watch: A strong bipartisan coalition could make huge advances on criminal justice reform

This legislative session, leaders of both parties, the governor, the Oklahoma business community and the public at large have expressed a clear desire to work towards ending Oklahoma’s incarceration crisis. Some of these legislative initiatives build on the progress of Gov. Fallin’s Criminal Justice Task Force, but many proposals represent new attempts to lower Oklahoma’s highest-in-the-world incarceration rate. [More...]

Bill Watch: A wide range of education issues on lawmakers’ agenda

Legislators filed approximately 2,800 bills this session, and about 250 of those dealt with education. This list below only touches the surface of those headed through the Legislature, but they could have considerable impact on Oklahoma's schools. [More...]

Bill Watch: Optimism and caution on the health care front

In previous years, health care legislation has often come with a sense of existential crisis, as budget cuts and efforts to take away coverage have loomed large. But this year, with a new administration and a healthier budget, lawmakers have a chance to reverse course and offer more readily accessible quality health care in Oklahoma. [More...]

Bill Watch: Quieter year expected on the tax front

Some of the fiercest battles of recent legislative sessions have centered on tax policy as lawmakers debated competing tax proposals to limit funding cuts and provide teachers a raise. This year, thanks to a strong economy and recent tax increases, the state's budget outlook is greatly improved. Yet even if the stakes are lower, lawmakers still filed hundreds of bills this session that would revise Oklahoma's tax system. [More...]

OK PolicyCast 43: 2019 Bill Watch, Part 1

It's a new year, a new Legislature, a new governor, and many new bills that could have a big impact on Oklahomans' lives. In this episode, Gene Perry talks to OK Policy's Executive Director David Blatt and Policy Director Carly Putnam about the big issues we're keeping an eye on this year related to the state budget, taxes, and health care. In a future episode, we'll talk about other bills we're tracking related to education, criminal justice, and economic opportunity. [More...]

Bill Watch: This year in #okleg

Last week, the Oklahoma legislature adjourned one of the more extraordinary legislative sessions in recent memory – one that followed one special session, ran partially concurrently with another, included nine days of protests at the Capitol, saw the Legislature raise… Read more “Bill Watch: This year in #okleg” [More...]