The first session of the 59th Legislature has officially started.
We will spend the next four months moving bills through the legislative process and finalizing the state budget for the Fiscal Year 2024.
Oklahoma lawmakers prefilled almost 3,100 bills and joint resolutions. Over 1,900 bills and 44 House joint resolutions were filed in the House, and more than 1,100 bills and 18 Senate joint resolutions were filed in the Senate. Only some of these bills will become law.
A joint resolution is similar to a bill but is mainly used as legislative referenda placed on statewide ballots. These are typically constitutional amendments submitted for the people to vote on, but sometimes legislators will send a proposed change in statute to the ballot voluntarily.
Once bills are first and second read in their chamber of origin, which happens the first week of session, they can be assigned to committees.
This year the House has 29 regular standing committees and 10 Appropriation and Budget subcommittees.
I will serve as vice chair of the Oklahoma House of Representatives Judiciary Criminal Committee. I am also serving on the Judiciary Civil, Veterans and Military Affairs, and Judiciary Committees.
Committees must approve each bill before it can be heard on the House floor. Once a bill moves to the House floor, the entire chamber will vote on them. In March, we will send our approved House bills to the Senate and then begin considering Senate bills.
Once it passes in both chambers, it is sent to the governor. If the governor signs a bill, it becomes state law. If the governor vetoes a bill, it does not become state law unless the Legislature overrides the veto. A two-thirds vote is needed in each house to override a veto.
Session officially started with the Governor’s annual State of the State address. He presented his plans for the legislative session focusing on advancing education, improving our economy and promoting freedom for all Oklahomans.
I look forward to working with my colleagues to address many of the issues Gov. Stitt addressed.
The Legislature must adjourn by Friday, May 26.
This past week we celebrated Rose Day at the Capitol. People presented roses, representing the sanctity of the unborn, to their state senator or representative. Several legislators and I released a statement supporting Oklahoma’s current abortion laws and every child’s right to life.
I am thankful and honored that the constituents of House District 31 have entrusted me with the responsibility of serving in the Oklahoma House of Representatives. As always, please do not hesitate to reach out to me with any concerns at 405-557-7350 or email@example.com.
Rep. Collin Duel, a Republican, serves District 31 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives, which covers Logan and Oklahoma counties.
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