House leadership groups formed

OKLAHOMA CITY – House Majority Floor Leader Jon Echols announced co-leaders of the House Republican Leadership Policy Working Groups, created to begin developing conservative policy proposals that reduce government waste and increase efficiencies in spending, enhance personal freedom and grow economic opportunities for Oklahomans.

Echols created the groups recently to develop an innovative and conservative policy agenda for implementation during the 2018 legislative session. Echols said he believes using a “co-leader” structure rather than “chair” structure will help increase collaboration among the group members.

“The hope is that co-leaders will facilitate discussion and encourage participation and ideas from the members,” said Echols, R-Oklahoma City. “There is a lot of work to do before December, so we want members to be engaged from the beginning so our time is efficient. Our goal is to develop policy ideas that innovate the way we develop and deliver government services to our citizens.”

There are seven working groups:

Agency, Board and Commission Consolidation and Efficiency:

State Rep. Josh Cockroft, R-Wanette, co-leader

State Rep. Mike Osburn R-Edmond, co-leader

Business Development, Commerce and Regulatory Environment:

State Rep. Elise Hall, R-Oklahoma City, co-leader

State Rep. Scott Fetgatter, R-Okmulgee, co-leader

State Rep. Casey Murdock, R-Felt, co-leader

Budget Reform:

State Rep. Kevin Wallace, R-Wellston, co-leader

State Rep. Terry O’Donnell, R-Tulsa, co-leader

State Rep. Earl Sears, R-Bartlesville, co-leader

Education Support and Reform:

State Rep. Todd Russ, R-Cordell, co-leader

State Rep. Michael Rogers, R-Broken Arrow, co-leader

Healthcare and Mental Health:

State Rep. Chad Caldwell, R-Enid, co-leader

State Rep. Marcus McEntire, R-Duncan, co-leader

Transportation:

State Rep. Dustin Roberts, R-Durant, co-leader

State Rep. Steve Vaughan, R-Ponca City, co-leader

Public Safety and Corrections:

State Rep. Bobby Cleveland, R-Slaughterville, co-leader

State Rep. Greg Babinec, R-Cushing, co-leader

The groups are expected to complete their work by December.

The policy working groups will meet monthly and are voluntary; unlike official interim studies, participating members will not be paid per diem or reimbursed for mileage for travel to the Capitol.