Collinsville, Oklahoma
February 20, 2014
Oklahoma Senate Sampler
Proposed New State Employee Retirement System /
Aviator Painting / Small Business Assist / Noncustodial Visitation

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Portrait of Famous Aviator and Chickasaw Legislator
Unveiled at State Capitol

Former Sen Ford with artist Christopher Nick and sponsors Chickasaw Governor Bill Anoatubby and Rep Ray McCarter. -- submitted photo
For Immediate Release:

OKLAHOMA CITY – A portrait of the late Pearl Carter Scott, one of the country’s youngest pilots and a former Chickasaw legislator, will now grace the walls of the Oklahoma State Capitol following the unveiling ceremony Wednesday in the House of Representatives. The portrait, painted by Oklahoma artist Christopher Nick, was a gift of the Chickasaw Nation, Governor Bill Anoatubby and Rep. Ray McCarter, Ed.D.

Eula Pearl Carter Scott was born in December 1915 in Marlow, Oklahoma, to George and Lucy Scott, who was an original enrollee of the Chickasaw Nation. After learning to drive at the age of 12, she soared to new heights and learned to fly at the age of 13 under legendary aviator Wiley Post. She became the youngest pilot in the U.S. with her first solo flight on September 12, 1929 and later became a stunt pilot.

In 1972, after starting a family, Scott became one of the Chickasaw Nation’s first community health representatives after studying at the Desert Willow Indian Training Center in Tucson, Arizona. In 1983, she was elected to the Chickasaw legislature, where she served three terms and helped oversee tremendous growth in tribal operations and services.

Scott was inducted into the Oklahoma Aviation and space Hall of Fame, the Chickasaw Nation Hall of Fame, the International Women’s Air and Space Museum Hall of Fame, and is a charter member of the National Museum of the American Indian at the Smithsonian.

A complete file of her aviation experiences is in the ‘History of Aviation Collection on Women” at Texas University in Dallas. She was listed in the 1978-79 edition of “Personalities of the South”, the 1989-1990 edition of “Outstanding Women of America”, and in the Chickasaw Historical Section of the Memphis Magazine. In 1990, she was Homecoming Queen and Guest of Honor for the 60th Anniversary of Wylie Post’s trip around the world. She passed away in 2005.

The portrait of Pearl Carter Scott is the 147th work of art commissioned by the Oklahoma Senate Historical Preservation Fund founded by retired Senator Charles Ford of Tulsa. Since its creation, the nonprofit has raised over $2 million in private funds to commission various kinds of artwork including paintings and sculptures at no expense to taxpayers.

This and other art commissioned by the Oklahoma State Senate Historical Preservation Fund, Inc. can be found on the Internet at:

About the Sponsors:

Governor Anoatubby began working for the Chickasaw Nation in 1975 as its health services director. A year later, he was asked to direct its finance department and then in October 1978, he was promoted to the position of special assistant to the governor and controller. In 1979, he was elected as the tribe’s first Lt. Governor and was then elected Governor in 1987. In his first term, he established goals of economic development and self-sufficiency for the Chickasaw Nation and its people. Today, the tribe is well on the way to achieving its goals.

Rep. McCarter, Ed.D, is a native Oklahoman who served in the U.S. Air Force during Vietnam before beginning a 30-year career as a teacher, coach, referee and school superintendent serving schools in Okarche, Mustang, Central, Marlow and Waurika. He served as a representative in House District 51 from 1996-2008 where he served as an Assistant Majority Floor Leader. He currently serves on the advisory board of the Chisholm Trail Arts Council and has served on committees within the Chickasaw Nation.

About the artist:

Christopher Nick was born and raised in rural Oklahoma and received his formal art training at the Atelier LeSueuer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He has worked for national publishing houses and advertising campaigns with McDonald’s and Dr. Pepper. His images have been published on book covers, children’s books, figurines, textiles, puzzles, ceramics, calendars, greeting cards and magazines.

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For more information, contact: Sandra Shelton: (405) 521-5563

Oklahoma State Senate
Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
Noncustodial visitation rights bill moves to House
For Immediate Release:

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Senate approved a measure Wednesday to protect the visitation rights of noncustodial parents. Senate Bill 1612, by Sen. Ron Sharp, would require custodial parents to provide the noncustodial parents, who are current on their child support, with the court ordered visitation schedule.

“Sadly, we have a common occurrence of noncustodial parents being denied their visitation rights by angry, bitter custodial parents without consideration of how it’s affecting their children. Kids need both of their parents and if a judge has ruled on visitation then both parents need to honor that schedule,” said Sharp, R-Shawnee. “Noncustodial parents can be fined for not paying their child support and we need to also ensure that custodial parents hold up their end of the agreement.”

Many District Attorneys in the state have divisions dedicated to securing child support payments from noncustodial parents. Those who fail to pay their child support face imprisonment and fines. Sharp noted, though, that hardly any effort has been made in Oklahoma to protect the visitation rights of noncustodial parents.

Under SB 1612, a custodial parent who refused to provide the court-ordered visitation schedule to the noncustodial parent would face a fine. The bill would also create a form for noncustodial parents to fill out at their local courthouse informing the district court that their visitation rights have been denied by the custodial parent.

The measure would also require that future divorce decrees define the penalty if the custodial parent denies the visitation rights of the noncustodial parent and also require that the custodial parent must show cause as to why the visitation schedule was violated.

SB 1612 now moves to the House for further consideration.

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Oklahoma State Senate
Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105

For more information, contact:
Sen. Sharp: (405) 521-5539

Senate approves measure to help state’s small businesses
For Immediate Release:

OKLAHOMA CITY – On Tuesday, the Senate approved legislation that would help more businesses qualify for the Small Employer Quality Jobs Incentive Act. Senate Bill 1329, by Sen. Ron Sharp, would remove population limits which currently make the incentive inaccessible to small businesses in Oklahoma’s larger populated areas.

“The legislature didn’t realize that they were leaving out small communities in Oklahoma, Tulsa and Cleveland counties when they enacted this legislation in 2011,” said Sharp, R-Shawnee. “My bill will level the playing field and allow more Oklahoma businesses, which meet the other requirements of the act, to take advantage of this great incentive.”

Currently to qualify for the incentive, businesses must be located in counties with populations of less than 200,000 or be located in an “opportunity zone”. SB 1329 would remove that population requirement.

“Small business owners shouldn’t be punished because they live in highly-populated, urban areas. They need this incentive just as much as the mom and pop shops in smaller, rural towns,” said Sharp. “I want to thank my colleagues for their support of this measure and for fighting for small business owners throughout the state.”

The Small Employer Quality Jobs Incentive Act allows qualifying small businesses with 90 employees or less to receive up to a five percent cash-back incentive for up to seven years to locate or expand in Oklahoma.

SB 1329 now moves to the House to be heard in committee.

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For more information, contact:

Sen. Sharp: (405) 521-5539

-- submitted by Jennifer Brock (2/18/2014)
Oklahoma State Senate
Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
Senate Review by Sen. Rick Brinkley
February 14, 2014


A Senate committee this week advanced my proposal to establish a new retirement system for state employees hired beginning Nov. 1, 2015. The Legislature in recent years has streamlined government, reduced waste, and approved a number of reform proposals to strengthen our state’s fiscal foundation. Legislation providing the next generation of state employees with a modern retirement system may be the most important step we can take to assure our long-term fiscal health.

This proposal would help us reduce our $11 billion pension liability, and would also make state employee retirement packages more competitive with private sector plans. A modern pension system will allow employees to take their retirement plan with them if they choose, and enable greater choice in how their contributions are invested. I want to ensure that state government keeps its promises to current employees, which is why the proposal will only apply to future state employees.

The management of Oklahoma’s long-term pension liability is particularly important as we look to the example of other states. Unsustainable pension systems have directly resulted in states like Illinois raising their taxes to such heights that employers are leaving the state. By adopting this legislation, we can assure a more stable future for state government.

A bill that would authorize a bond to fund desperately needed repairs to the State Capitol building was also approved by a Senate committee this week. Hopefully, this proposal quickly makes its way through the legislative process and is signed by the governor, so we can take advantage of low rates and current material costs. The Capitol is an irreplaceable asset, and we can’t wait any longer to fix it. With every passing month, the price tag for repairs rises higher.

The State Capitol is in many ways a crumbling building. For years now, the state has been forced to erect temporary barriers around the exterior, to protect tourists and workers from falling pieces of limestone. The interior plumbing is a health hazard, and extensive water damage can be seen throughout the building.

One of our most important responsibilities as lawmakers is to take care of the state’s assets. The State Capitol is not only one of our most valuable and visible assets, it’s the people’s building and a piece of living history. We want the Capitol to be a place where people can comfortably and safely participate in the business of government. Oklahomans should be able to take pride in their Capitol building. The approval of a bond will allow us to undertake a renovation that will make the building useful and usable for another century.

Please feel free to contact me at the state Capitol by calling (405) 521-5566 or by email at


Oklahoma State Senate District 34
-- Submitted by Matt Glanville (2/14/2014)
Note: I receive a lot more of these press releases than I am able to take time & space for on cvilleok ... I'll always try to include Rick's info ... but the rest will just be a sample. And just because legistation is proposed doesn't always mean it will be come law.-- Ted Wright