Tulsa area Republicans scored well on votes on 22 bills designed to gauge economic freedom, free enterprise, individual opportunity, limited government and federalism.
Rep. David Brumbaugh, R-Broken Arrow, led the way with a perfect 100 percent score from OCPA Impact, a lobbying branch of the conservative think tank, Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs.
In the House, “A” ratings went to Tulsa area lawmakers Brumbaugh; Rep. Michael Rogers, R-Broken Arrow; Rep. David Derby; R-Owasso; Rep. Sean Roberts, R-Tulsa; Rep. Terry O’Donnell, R-Tulsa; Chuck Strohm, R-Tulsa; and Rep. Glen Mulready.
Tulsa area representatives who got an “F” were Rep. Seneca Scott, D-Tulsa; Rep. Eric Proctor, D-Tulsa; and Rep. Jeannie McDaniel, D-Tulsa.
In the Senate, “A” ratings were given to Sen. Gary Stanislawski, R-Tulsa; Sen. Bill Brown, R-Broken Arrow; and Sen. Nathan Dahm, R-Broken Arrow.
OCPA Impact CEO Dave Bond said the intent of the scorecard is to show how individual lawmakers in the 2015 legislative session generally supported the interests of growth-minded Oklahoma taxpayers. .
“Over the course of the 2015 legislative session, we notified legislators when bills were added to the watch list for potential use on the scorecard,” Bond said on his website. “We tracked and scored committee and floor votes on the bills included.
“The scorecard is just one of our efforts at OCPA Impact to help Oklahoma become the absolute best state for working families, taxpayers and entrepreneurs and to keep our state’s economy growing in the right direction.”
The 22 bills were weighted with a point system based on their relative importance.
Tulsa Area Representatives
|100||A||David Brumbaugh, R-Broken Arrow|
|96.8||A||Michael Rogers, R-Broken Arrow|
|96.1||A||David Derby, R-Owasso|
|94.9||A||Sean Roberts, R-Tulsa|
|94.6||A||Chuck Strohm, R-Tulsa|
|91.2||A||Terry O’Donnell, R-Tulsa|
|90.6||A||Glen Mulready, R-Tulsa|
|88.6||B||Dr. Mike Ritze, R-Broken Arrow|
|87.4||B||Mark McCullough, R-Sapulpa|
|87.3||B||Ken Walker, R-Tulsa|
|85.7||B||Weldon Watson, R-Tulsa|
|82.4||B||Pam Peterson, R-Tulsa|
|82.0||B||Katie Henke, R-Tulsa|
|78.5||C||Jadine Nollan, R-Sand Springs|
|45.5||F||Seneca Scott, D-Tulsa|
|31.0||F||Eric Proctor, D-Tulsa|
|27.8||F||Jeannie McDaniel, D-Tulsa|
Tulsa Area Senators
|93.8||A||Gary Stanislawski, R-Tulsa|
|93.1||A||Bill Brown, R-Broken Arrow|
|91.8||A||Nathan Dahm, R-Broken Arrow|
|85.8||B||Rick Brinkley, R-Owasso|
|80.9||B||Dan Newberry, R-Tulsa|
|84.9||B||Brian Bingman, R-Sapulpa|
|79.5||C||Brian Crian, R-Tulsa|
|76.6||C||Mike Mazzei, R-Tulsa|
Here is a summary of those bills and if a yes or no vote was suggested.
Senate Bill 18 – Yes
Public School District Administration Savings
Principal authors: Sen. Kyle Loveless, Rep. Jon Echols
It would have authorized task force to study and make recommendations regarding consolidation of Oklahoma public schools administration, in an effort to reduce administrative costs and direct more funds to classrooms. It passed in the Senate and was not heard in House.
Senate Bill 127 – Yes
Appointment of Medicaid Agency Director
Principal authors: Sen. Kim David, Rep. Tom Newell
It would have allowed the governor to directly appoint director of the Oklahoma Health Care Authority. It was passed in a House committee but not heard on House floor.
Senate Bill 468 – Yes
Protecting Mineral Rights Owners
Principal authors: Sen. Bryce Marlatt, Rep. Kevin Calvey
In future cases in which a municipality restricted drilling for oil and natural gas, it would have made the municipality responsible for compensating mineral rights owners for any revenue lost due to the new restrictions. It passed the House but did not emerge from conference committees.
Senate Bill 560 – Yes
Direct Primary Care Protections
Principal authors: Sen. Rob Standridge, Rep. David Derby
This preserves the right of Oklahoma patients and their doctors to arrange for direct primary care outside of traditional insurance plans, using private payment. It was signed by the governor.
Senate Bill 609 – Yes
Education Savings Accounts
Principal authors: Sen. Clark Jolley, Rep. Jason Nelson
It would have allowed parents of Oklahoma schoolchildren to utilize Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) to place their children in individually customized educational environments – including environments outside the traditional public education system. It passed in a Senate committee but was not heard on Senate floor.
Senate Bill 648 – Yes
State Employee Health Insurance Reform
Principal authors: Sen. Greg Treat, Rep. Glen Mulready
It would have allowed HealthChoice, the main provider of Oklahoma state employee health plans, to adjust deductibles and copays for medical procedures for state employees, based on certain criteria. It would have allowed HealthChoice to steer state employees toward facilities that are already saving county and city governments in Oklahoma millions of dollars by providing high-quality procedures at a fraction of the cost of large hospitals, due to low overhead of the free- market medicine model. It passed in a House committee but was not heard on House floor.
Senate Bill 676 – Yes
Pushing Back Against EPA Overreach
Principal authors: Sen. Greg Treat, Rep. Jon Echols
It would have statutorily ensured Oklahoma does not comply with unconstitutional or otherwise illegal provisions in new Clean Power Plan regulations being implemented by the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). It was vetoed by Gov. Mary Fallin on May 1.
Senate Bill 752 – Yes
Principal authors: Sen. Kim David, Rep. Glen Mulready
It would have initiated a coordinated care model for a portion of Oklahoma’s Medicaid population, similar to models currently saving taxpayers millions of dollars in other states. Oklahoma’s Medicaid system is currently fee-for-service, with little emphasis on responsible individual behavior. It passed in a House committee but was not heard on House floor.
Senate Bill 782
Charter School Expansion – Yes
Principal authors: Sen. Clark Jolley, Rep. Lee Denney
Increases school choice options statewide by eliminating statutory restrictions on placing charter schools outside of Oklahoma and Tulsa counties. Establishes best practices for sponsors and applicants. Also allows for an appeals process, should a charter school application be denied despite local community support. It was signed by the governor.
Senate Bill 809 – Yes
Preempting Excessive Local Restrictions on Energy Production
Principal authors: Sen. Brian Bingman, Rep. Jeff Hickman
It pre-empts local Oklahoma municipalities from prohibiting oil and gas production within their geographical limits. It was signed by the governor.
Senate Bill 839 – No
Funding for Oklahoma Museum of Popular Culture
Principal authors: Sen. Brian Bingman, Rep. Jeff Hickman
It formally creates Oklahoma Museum of Popular Culture in Tulsa and authorizes Oklahoma Capitol Improvement Authority to issue $25 million worth of bonds to finance construction. Museums, generally speaking, are not a core function of state government. Oklahoma’s state government already funds a number of museums, and will likely continue to do so; however, based on experience with the Native American Cultural Center and Museum, costs for a new museum are likely to mount above projections, further burdening taxpayers. It was signed by the governor on May 29.
House Bill 1566 – Yes
Medicaid Reform – Yes
Principal authors: Rep. Glen Mulready, Sen. Kim David
It initiates a coordinated care model for a portion of Oklahoma’s Medicaid population, similar to models currently saving taxpayers millions of dollars in other states. It was signed by Gov. Mary Fallin.
House Bill 1567 – Yes
State Employee Health Insurance Reform
Principal authors: Rep. Glen Mulready, Sen. Greg Treat
It allows HealthChoice, the main provider of Oklahoma state employee health plans, to adjust deductibles and copays for medical procedures for state employees, based on certain criteria. It was signed by the governor on Apr. 13.
House Bill 1614 – Yes
Preempting Local Restrictions on Ridesharing
Principal authors: Rep. Katie Henke, Sen. Jason Smalley
It establishes statewide standards across Oklahoma for ridesharing companies like Uber and Lyft. It was signed by the governor on May 8
House Bill 1696 – Yes
Charter School Expansion
Principal authors: Rep. Jason Nelson, Sen. David Holt
As originally filed, would have provided avenues for physical-location charter schools to be sponsored and established throughout Oklahoma. Previously, due to statutory restrictions, physical-location charter schools could be sponsored and established only in Oklahoma and Tulsa counties. It passed in the Senate floor but Senate amendments were not approved by House.
House Bill 1747 – Yes
Rural Opportunity Zones
Principal authors: Rep. Tom Newell, Sen. Mike Schulz
It would have made Oklahoma counties with declining population more competitive by classifying them as Rural Opportunity Zones and offering a five-year income tax exemption for families, individuals, workers and employers – new taxpayers, all – moving in from out of state. Kansas currently offers a similar program. Every county in Texas is income-tax-free. It passed in the Senate but did not emerge from a House committee.
House Bill 1748 – Yes
Federal Funds Transparency
Principal authors: Rep. Tom Newell, Sen. Greg Treat
It would have required Oklahoma state government agencies to publicly disclose the federal funds they receive, as well as strings attached to those funds. It was vetoed by the governor on May 11.
House Bill 1749 – Yes
Principal authors: Rep. Tom Newell, Sen. Nathan Dahm
It prohibits Oklahoma state government from collecting membership dues on behalf of any organization that collectively bargains against taxpayers at the state agency or school district level. Taxpayers in Oklahoma had previously been forced to facilitate dues collections for government labor unions that funded extreme political causes. It was signed by the governor.
House Bill 2003 – Yes
Principal authors: Rep. Jason Nelson, Sen. Clark Jolley
It would have allowed parents of Oklahoma schoolchildren to use Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) to place their children in individually customized educational environments – including environments outside the traditional public education system. It failed in a House committee.
House Bill 2237 – No
Funding for American Indian Cultural Center and Museum
Principal authors: Rep. Jeff Hickman, Sen. Brian Bingman
It provides additional funding, in the form of $25 million in bonds, for the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum, still under construction. Oklahoma’s state government currently funds a number of museums – including over $1 million a year for this museum – and will likely continue to do so; however, with this project, costs have consistently mounted above projections, further burdening taxpayers. To date, taxpayers have committed over $100 million to this individual project. It was signed by Fallin on May 28.
House Bill 2242 – No
General Appropriations Funding for Oklahoma State Government
Principal authors: Rep. Earl Sears, Sen. Clark Jolley
This provides appropriations for much of Oklahoma state government for Fiscal Year 2016, though actually equals only between one-third and two-fifths of total states pending. During session, legislative- and executive-branch leaders consistently said the state was facing a budget “shortfall” of at least $611 million. The FY 2016 budget agreement, of which HB 2242 was the centerpiece, was touted by lawmakers as a reduction compared to the prior fiscal year’s appropriation; in reality, however, the budget agreement represented an increase of over $17 million compared to the prior fiscal year. It was signed by Gov. Mary Fallin June 1.
House Joint Resolution 1012 – Yes
“Right to Farm” Ballot Question
Principal authors: Rep. Scott Biggs, Sen. Jason Smalley This gives Oklahoma voters the opportunity, on a statewide ballot, to guarantee the right to engage in certain farming and ranching practices. Experiences in California and other states show what can happen when agricultural producers are subjected to excessive regulations.
The stated end goal of many of the ultra-liberal activists behind these regulations is simple: end the use of livestock, poultry, fish and other agricultural products for food. It was filed with Secretary of State on April 30.