House Energy committee meeting at top of Boles' state work

by Brad Boles

Legislative Session Begins

Our legislative session kicked off on Monday, February 6, with Governor Stitt's State of the State Address. In his annual speech, he outlines his policy and budget priorities as we begin a new session. This year, he outlined three areas of priority: education, business and freedom.

He emphasized the need for different types of schooling options for students. The Governor also spoke about the need for a new reading initiative in the nation to get students reading at grade level and expanding concurrent enrollment so high schoolers can more easily earn college credits.

Governor Stitt informed us that over 23,000 new jobs have been created in Oklahoma since 2019. He asked the Legislature to focus on lowering taxes, developing our workforce, improving infrastructure and diversifying Oklahoma's energy grid to help attract more businesses to our state.

The governor also discussed the importance of maintaining individual freedom while protecting Oklahomans, including prioritizing highway safety, election integrity and standing up Oklahoma values.

While the governor outlines his policies and state budget every year, the power to create laws and appropriate taxpayer dollars ultimately lie with the Legislature. The first step in creating a new law is passing it through committee. This week, I worked with committee chairs to request hearings for my bills.

As chair of the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee, I worked with members whose bills were assigned to my committee. I meet with energy industry associations, the Secretary of Energy, the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, the Oklahoma Water Resources Board, the Oklahoma Dept. of Environmental Quality and other stakeholders to review each bill. Having these meetings in advance of hearing the bill in committee allows more time to work with the bill author on any issues that may arise later.

Next week, I'll hold the first House Energy committee meeting of the session, so I'm working with my vice chair Rep. Dean Davis to plan the agenda for the meeting.

On Wednesday, the House recognized "Rose Day," an annual tradition where pro-life advocates present lawmakers with red roses to symbolize the sanctity of life of our unborn children. Rose Day is a reminder to all of us that the fight to save the unborn must not waiver. Hundreds of people gathered at the State Capitol to participate, including many familiar faces from Stephens and Grady Counties. I am proud to live in Oklahoma where we value and protect life, including the unborn. A Bible verse came to mind on Wednesday as I visited with many pro-life advocates: Proverbs 31:8, which calls on us to "Speak for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute."

As your state representative, I will continue to speak up on behalf of the unborn and represent you at the State Capitol. Please reach out to me with your questions or concerns. You can contact me at (405) 557-7405 or at brad.boles@okhouse.gov. Thank you for the honor of representing you at the State Capitol—God bless!

Rep. Brad Boles represents District 51 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives, which includes Grady and Stephens Counties. To reach Boles, call: (405) 557-7405



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