Legislators Fill Capital with New Law Proposals
Johnson, Bill, THE JOURNAL RECORD
By Bill Johnson Oklahoma legislators, mindful of the shortened session and the closeness of the bill-introduction deadline, have filled the hoppers with proposed laws ranging from seat belt usage to smoking.
And two legislators want to make sure dead candidates won't get elected to judicial posts again.
The first session of the 43rd Legislature opens Monday, and because of the session-shortening constitutional amendment adopted by the people, all bill deadlines have been compressed.
The deadline for legislators to request that a bill be drafted has already passed. The deadline for introducing legislation comes Thursday.
By late Wednesday, 91 bills had been introduced in the House and more than 80 in the Senate.
One bill by Rep. Jesse Pilgrim, D-Cushing, seems destined to stir up a considerable amount of dissension. That bill would allow law enforcement agencies to set up roadblocks to stop motorists to check for violations.
Pilgrim's bill lists the violations as driving under the influence, driving under suspension or revocation of a driver's license, having an expired or no inspection sticker, having no security verification form, having an invalid motor vehicle registration or having no valid permit for the type and size of truck being operated.
Reps. Jack Begley, D-Goodwell, and Larry Roberts, D-Miami, filed different bills dealing with dead judicial candidates. The purpose is to prevent a reoccurrence of a situation in which a deceased candidate won a judicial election in western Oklahoma last year.
Rep. Ed Apple, R-Duncan, would add indoor and outdoor stadiums and arenas and outdoor theaters to the places where smoking is prohibited.
Voter registration until 5 p.m. on election day would be made legal under a bill filed by Rep. Rob Johnson, R-Tulsa. Election day registrations would occur only at the county election board or at sites specified by the board's secretary.
A bill by Sen. Jed Wright, R-Tulsa, to create the Parental Choice Act would allow parents to pick the school their child attended. This was something Republican legislators fought unsuccessfully for during debate on House Bill 1017, the $223 million school reform and tax bill.
Rep. Bill Paulk, D-Oklahoma City, and Sen. Ben Brown, D-Oklahoma City, are authors of a bill that would require seat belts for all passengers on school buses. The bill also would make it unlawful to sell or offer to sell any school bus from the 1992 model year on that was not equipped with seat belts. …