Legislative Update 2/14/2007
State Representative Jason Murphey
One of the important issues the House will consider this year is immigration reform. A number of reform proposals have been put forth, ranging from making state government responsible for immigration enforcement to holding businesses responsible for due diligence in hiring practices.
One of the most controversial immigration reform proposals is contained in HB 1423, introduced by freshman Representative George Faught. This proposal would make English the official language of the State of Oklahoma and would require that all state business be conducted in English. The bill passed out of committee on a 9-7 vote and can now go before the full House. I support the proposal and intend to vote for it on the House floor.
A second important immigration reform proposal was put forward by freshman State Representative Mark McCullough. McCullough's HB 1413 would empower a task force to enforce immigration laws at the state level. The proposal is important because of inaction by the federal government on the matter. McCullough believes the proposal would help force the federal government to act. Unfortunately, the bill did not make it through the committee process. However, it is still possible that this important language will be included in other immigration reform legislation.
It is noteworthy that these proposals were initiated by freshmen State Representatives. I believe the fact that this legislation was proposed by newly elected representatives indicates that Oklahomans support immigration reform. As a fellow freshman, I can certainly testify to the fact that plenty of voters have made it known that immigration reform is an important issue which must be addressed.
As always, please feel free to contact me at 557-7350 or on the web at www.HouseDistrict31.com with your input on legislation or with requests for assistance.