Sunday, October 25, 2009

Town Hall Meeting Update

This week I will be hosting the third of four Town Hall meetings which are scheduled in House District 31 during this year's legislative interim. At each of these Town Hall meetings, it has been my goal to bring together state and local officials to provide updates to area residents. At almost every meeting, I have invited at least one area State Senator and one local County Commissioner to provide a broad base of access to both state and local issues.

I very much appreciate the officials who have attended these events and am also grateful to the citizens who have participated. What I especially appreciate about this turn out is that it provides the opportunity for elected officials to hear first hand from citizens how they feel about issues. Especially in light of recent events, citizens have not been at all shy about making their voices heard.

Our first meeting took place in August, was held in south Logan County/Edmond, and was attended by about 140 individuals. Speaking at the meeting were State Senator Clark Jolly, State Senator Randy Brogden and County Commissioner Mark Sharpton. Aparticular focus of the meeting was the states' rights issue and many participants were especially anxious about what they see as the destructive, excessive spending habits and bad policies developed by the federal government. They want state government to stand up and assert its rights under the 10th amendment to shelter the public from these federal polices.

The second meeting occurred in Guthrie and was attended by about 40 participants. Michael Carnuccio from Oklahomans for Government Reform (OFRG) was present to talk about OFRG's recent effort to study transparency issues in Oklahoma school districts. State Senator Halligan sent his regrets as he had a schedule conflict on that evening. The Senator looks forward to meeting with Logan County residents at future Town Hall meetings. A special "thank you" to County Commissioner Mark Sharpton who agreed to fill in and speak at a Town Hall meeting for a second time this year.

This third meeting will take place this week (Tuesday, 7:00 p.m. at Woodcrest Fire Station) and is being attended by newly elected County Commissioner Mike Pearson and Stuart Jolly, Director of the Oklahoma Chapter of Americans for Prosperity. This will be Pearson's first appearance at a town hall meeting since taking office. Jolly will update the attendees on the ongoing federal health policy debate.

The final Town Hall meeting is set to take place at the Crescent Community Center December 7 at 7:00 p.m. Speakers will include state Senator Patrick Anderson and new Logan County Sheriff Jim Bauman. County Commissioner Monty Piercy may also be in attendance in order to answer road-related questions.

If you are available to attend one of the remaining meetings, I would certainly appreciate and look forward to your presence.

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