On Tuesday, lawmakers gathered for our constitutionally-required Organizational Day to approve rules for the upcoming legislative session and elect leadership.
House Speaker Charles McCall of Atoka was reelected as Speaker for his third term, making him Oklahoma’s longest serving House Speaker. During my two years in the House, I have come to know him as always willing to listen. Whatever decision we are facing, Speaker McCall continually reminds representatives that our first priority is the people we represent. He is a great example of what true leadership looks like and I look forward to continuing to work with him!
Now that the rules have been approved and leadership has been elected, lawmakers are returning their focus to finalizing their bill drafts before the filing deadline.
To view bills that have already been filed, visit the House website at www.okhouse.gov. Under the “Legislation” tab, click on “Advanced Bill Search.” From there, click on “Current Status” and retrieve the legislation for either chamber or for both. As more bills are filed, they will become available to view online.
Lawmakers are also continuing to work on the redistricting process, and the North Central Redistricting Subcommittee hosted a public town hall in Chandler on Jan. 6 to hear input from constituents. I serve as vice chair of the committee, alongside our chairman, Rep. Ty Burns.
Preliminary numbers indicate the population of Oklahoma has grown about 5%, so district lines will need to be adjusted because some cities have gained and some have lost population. Each state representative will cover about 40,000 people in the new districts, up from 37,000 currently. State senators will have about 82,000-84,000 people in each district.
If you missed the meeting, you can visit the House website to view the recording of the meeting and learn more about the redistricting process. The video is available under the Media tab, then click on “House Audio/Video” and then on “Recordings.” If you have questions or suggestions about the redistricting process, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or the House Redistricting Office at RedistrictOklahoma2020@okhouse.gov.
During the legislative session, high school students have the opportunity to serve as pages for their state representative. Pages are assigned for one week, Monday through Thursday, throughout the months of February through May.
Serving as a page includes working in the House Chamber during daily session, running errands for Representatives and House staff and taking part in the House Page Mock Legislature.
Hotel accommodations and chaperones are provided for all students, and they are transported to and from the Capitol daily. Pages are closely supervised at all times and are not permitted to leave the hotel or the Capitol.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the page program is limited to high school seniors this year. I encourage students from my district who are interested in paging for me this session to visit https://okhouse.gov/Pages/Index.aspx for more information and to apply. Spots fill up quickly, so submit your application soon!
As always, please reach out to my office at 405-557-7304 or email@example.com with any questions or concerns! Thank you for allowing me to serve as your representative!
Rep. John Talley, a Republican, serves District 33 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives, which covers Logan and Payne Counties.