By Representative Cynthia Roe
Hope everyone had a merry Christmas with their loved ones! It’s always a pleasure to spend time with friends and family, especially during the holiday season.
I want to thank everyone who attended the Medical Marijuana Town Hall in Pauls Valley on December 16th. We had a great turnout!
I especially want to pay tribute to officials from the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority, the Oklahoma Office of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, and local law enforcement officials who answered many questions from attendees.
Many voters raised concerns about the number of growing facilities, property values and illegal operations within the state. I have heard similar concerns from constituents who have contacted my office, and I am working with fellow legislators and officials to identify potential courses of action.
I plan to organize a second town hall in the future so that those who could not attend this one can have another opportunity. I will keep you posted on the details once the plans are defined.
At the State Capitol, the next legislative session is just over a month away.
We passed another deadline on Thursday December 30th. Members submitted detailed information on the subject matter of the legislation they requested, as well as any existing model legislation or draft legislation.
I have met with many stakeholders and state officials to prepare for our next legislative deadline, which is the deadline for tabling the bill on January 20.
Members must formally table the legislation they plan to pursue in the next session before this deadline.
We are already preparing to begin the budget hearing process. The Oklahoma Equalization Board met on December 27 to approve the preliminary allotment budget for fiscal year 2023, which runs from July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023.
The current estimate is just over $ 10 billion, which is the biggest budget we’ve had in the history of the state.
However, $ 9.1 billion of the current estimate comes from recurring sources and the remaining $ 1.2 billion is in the form of non-recurring cash reserves.
So while it looks like we’ll have the biggest budget in state history, we need to make sure that the $ 1.2 billion of one-time money is not allocated to recurring costs but rather goes to one-time expenses.
We also plan to set aside some of our credits in a rainy day fund to help us in a future economic downturn.
As the session approaches, I will be back with another update on the bills I introduce this year and any other important legislation. Thank you for the honor of representing House District 42!
(Rep. Cynthia Roe, a Republican, serves District 42 of the Oklahoma House of Representatives, which covers Garvin and McClain counties.)