Capitol Greetings July 9, 2024

Tuesday, 09 July 2024 15:43

Capitol Greetings July 9, 2024 Featured

Written by Rep. Jim Grego
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Workforce development seems to be the phrase of the day lately. Lt. Gov. Matt Pinnell came to McAlester last week, meeting with the team at the local workforce development center as well as with McAlester Chamber of Commerce members in a discussion and question and answer type setting. 

Everyone is keenly aware of the shortage of an available workforce in almost every occupation. Lt. Gov. Pinnell dove into some of the root causes. Several points that came forward were the need for affordable day care and housing. It was a productive meeting with many community business leaders present. Ironically, the next day I received a call from Oklahoma State University Extension asking for assistance in setting up some type of community meeting addressing the workforce shortage in rural Oklahoma. At least this seems to be on everybody's radar. Hopefully some meaningful solutions will be forthcoming.

We did pass some legislation over the past few years that should help in this area.

This year, Senate Bill 1447 was signed into law. This adds the Oklahoma Workforce Commission as a collaborator on the state's five-year economic development plan and requires the plan to include an economic development strategy that addresses target industries, site development and workforce needs.

House Bill 3449 establishes the University Hospitals Authority Behavioral Health Workforce Development Fund to help support workforce development in this field and facilitate access to behavioral health professionals. 

Additional legislation has been in the area of CareerTech and Higher Education, better aligning workforce development at this stage to help the state fill critical job areas such as teachers, engineers, nurses and more.

As always, thank You for allowing me to serve you. I can be reached at (405) 557-7381 or by email at



Jim Grego serves District 17 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives. His district includes Latimer County and part and Pittsburg County.


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