My 2011 Legislation

By State Rep. Mike Sanders

Although my primary focus during the 2011 legislative session will be the state budget, I have filed four bills at the request of local county governments and two bills that will increase community safety. I have also re-filed legislation to create a sales tax exemption for the American Legion.

The American Legion is the only auxiliary group in Oklahoma that does not qualify for a sales tax exemption to help them in their excellent tradition of community service. House Bill 1325 would create a targeted sales tax exemption which doesn’t amount to much money in the overall scheme of things, but helps out a service organization that is known for its positive effect on communities throughout the state.

You may remember my legislation to limit the use of emergency lights with the red-and-blue combination. After House Bill 2969 was signed into law, I realized that state and county road workers would no longer be able to use those lights. I filed House Bill 1061 this year to correct that problem and ensure the safety of those workers from being hit by vehicles.

Two of my bills change the county clerk’s responsibilities. House Bill 1050 changes the process of electing a fair association board of directors. My legislation would require candidates to the board to file with the county election board instead of the county clerk. House Bill 1051 makes each elected county officer responsible for their inventory records, files and reports. Currently, this responsibility rests solely with the county clerk.

House Bill 1052 will aid counties in making day-to-day purchases. Blanket purchase orders basically allow repetitive purchases without having to approve each and every purchase. My legislation will increase the maximum amount that a county can issue on a blanket purchase order to aid counties in taking care of their day-to-day business. House Bill 1060 will give county commissioners greater flexibility in repairing county roads and bridges.

My final piece of legislation for this year will better define the levels of firefighter training that are eligible for existing tax credits. Rural firefighters are sometimes unpaid or only part-time and these tax credits give them an incentive to work towards the same level of training firefighters in larger fire departments would generally receive. To me, this is a public safety issue, plain and simple. Better training ensures better safety in our rural communities.

As always, I would love to hear from you. I can be reached at the Capitol at (405) 557-7407.

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