Capitol Greetings June 21, 2022

Tuesday, 21 June 2022 14:20

Capitol Greetings June 21, 2022 Featured

Written by Jim Grego House District 17
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One hundred years and going strong. That's how I would describe Wilburton's Lions Club, which just celebrated its 100th year of giving. Wilburton's Lions Club has always provided, whether it be local livestock shows, pancake breakfasts, eyeglasses, the list goes on and on. The Lions Club's most recent gift was a check for $40,000 to the City of Wilburton for a new splash pad for our children. They partnered with the Choctaw Nation, which matched this gift. I also want to recognize the good our tribal partners often provide for us.

I had the opportunity to participate in the dedication of the "Carolyn Woods Memorial Bridge" this past week. Carolyn was an Oklahoma Department of Transportation employee who was struck by a vehicle and killed while on the job in a work zone near McAlester in 1998. A new bridge south of McAlester was named in her honor. The sad part is 61 employees have lost their lives in work zone accidents in Oklahoma. This is unacceptable.

Last week, the Legislature met in two special sessions at the Capitol. In the special session the governor called, the House passed a number of bills aimed at providing inflation relief for Oklahomans. The governor's call was for the Legislature to eliminate the state sales tax on groceries (leaving the city and county portions intact) and to reduce the personal income tax for all Oklahoma taxpayers. These are both measures the House passed in regular session, but they didn't make it all the way through the Senate. In special session, we passed versions of each measure that would grant either permanent relief or place a temporary moratorium on the taxes until we can determine the effect on the overall economy. While the House passed these measures, the Senate has yet to take any of them up.

In our legislatively called special session, both the House and the Senate passed seven measures to grant American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to various projects that will result in more nurses and health care workers in Oklahoma through our Career Technology system, as well as some rural water project matching grants with the tribes, startup money for the state's Broadband Office, and others. Those bills now await the governor's signature. We adjourned this special session to the call of the chair, meaning we can come back in the future to consider more projects to receive relief funding. 

As always, thank You for allowing me to serve you. It is a true pleasure. If there is ever anything I can do for you, I can be reached at (405) 557-7381 or by email at jim.grego@okhouse.gov 

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