Bipartisan Push for Americans’ Release

On Monday evening, Congressman Josh Brecheen (R-OK) returned from a bipartisan, bicameral congressional delegation (CODEL) to Turks and Caicos (TCI) where the members met with TCI government officials to discuss the five Americans being detained on the islands for inadvertently having ammunition in their luggage. If convicted, the Americans could each face a twelve-year minimum prison sentence. One of the Americans trapped is Ryan Tyler Watson, of Oklahoma.

Senator Markwayne Mullin (R-OK) led the CODEL and also in attendance was Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) and Reps. Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA), Michael Cloud (R-TX), and Bob Good (R-VA).

Congressional delegation meeting in Turks and Caicos
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Keep OK Beautiful Paint Program

Keep Oklahoma Beautiful (KOB) will open applications for its Paint Oklahoma Beautiful program June 1, 2024. This initiative supports community beautification projects by providing organizations with paint donated by HIS Paint and stipend checks for supplies.

The Paint Oklahoma Beautiful program allows eligible organizations to apply for donated paint to enhance the visual appeal of public spaces. “We are so thrilled to partner with HIS Paint and the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality to bring this program to communities across the state of Oklahoma,” said Maeve Phillips, Program Manager at KOB. “We want to empower local groups to take pride in their town and contribute to a more beautiful Oklahoma.” 

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Help Authorized for Prisoner Care

On Monday, Gov. Kevin Stitt signed into law Senate Bill 1668, authored by Sen. John Haste, R-Broken Arrow. This important legislation provides Oklahoma sheriffs with the authority to contract with private security firms to guard detainees or prisoners temporarily housed for treatment in medical facilities outside the confines of jail officials said in a release today.

“This bill is a critical step in maintaining the safety and security of our communities while ensuring that detainees and prisoners can receive necessary medical care,” Haste said. “By allowing sheriffs to contract with qualified private security firms, we can provide the necessary oversight and protection in medical facilities without overburdening our law enforcement officers.”

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AG Drummond Returns DOJ Fire

Two days after the Biden Administration sent a letter threatening to sue Oklahoma over its new immigration reform law, Attorney General Gentner Drummond issued a sharply worded response vowing to defend the law he claimed today in a media release.

In a May 15 letter to Gov. Stitt and AG Drummond, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) threatened to challenge House Bill 4156 unless Oklahoma agrees not to enforce it, claiming the law is unconstitutional and preempted by federal statute.

“This letter constitutes notice … that the U.S. Department of Justice intends to bring a lawsuit to enforce the supremacy of federal law and to enjoin the enforcement of HB 4156,” stated the DOJ. “If you have not confirmed by May 20, 2024, that Oklahoma will forbear such enforcement, the United States will pursue all appropriate legal remedies to ensure that Oklahoma does not interfere with the function of the federal government.”

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Tulsa District 3 Candidate Void

The City of Tulsa is holding general elections for mayor, city auditor, and city council on August 27, 2024 with a filing deadline of June 12th. Council District 3, long my home district, has no candidate on the ballot declared at this time. The current Councilor, Crista Patrick, is stepping down, and there appears to be no civic-minded resident willing to step in the void. Not one.

For many years there was a leap frog term exchange between Roscoe Turner and David Patrick as Councilors for the District. After Mr. Patrick’s passing, his daughter Crista took up the mantle. All have advanced growth and fought what negative issues came with that growth.

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