|Feb. 9, 2007
By Rep. Earl Sears
The job has begun.
As I write this, we're in the first week of the 2007 legislative session,
my first as a member of the Oklahoma House of Representatives. We've
rolled up our sleeves, and now we're getting to work.
The state Capitol
is indeed a busy place. Already our time has been filled by committee
meetings, where we hear from state agency heads and budget leaders who
present their funding requests. We also hear from other state legislators
who make the case for why their bills should become law.
While some lawmakers
may enter the Capitol Building for the first time and be taken aback
by the hustle and bustle, I've had some preparation for this moment.
As principal at Bartlesville's Central Middle School for 24 years, I
know what it's like to constantly face details and meetings, more details
and more meetings, and all that goes with doing the work of the people.
I'm thankful for those experiences, as they have helped me make the
transition to working as a state representative.
Already we are seeing
important issues rise to the forefront. Education funding remains a
key issue, as does making quality health care affordable for all Oklahomans.
We need to make sure the tax cuts implemented in the past two years
remain permanent. We must be tough on crime, but also on the causes
of crime. And we cannot allow illegal immigrants to burden taxpayers.
To realize these
goals, we must promote a wise fiscal policy, one that holds all areas
of state government accountable. That often means reforming the system
to make it more efficient and effective.
I also hope you'll
join me in supporting the new 100 ideas initiative. Created by House
Speaker Lance Cargill, this is a nonpartisan effort to find the most
innovative and forward-thinking ideas for Oklahoma's future.
We're looking for
ideas of all kinds from anyone willing to share them: ideas for education,
technology, public works, you name it - ideas to help create jobs, promote
health, ensure safety, preserve our heritage, and simply make Oklahoma
If you're interested
in this effort, log on to the Web site: www.100ideasok.org.
Finally, if I can
ever assist you, either here at the state Capitol or at home in the
district, please contact me. The best ways to reach my office are by
phone, (405) 557-7358, or by e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org. Also please
feel free to call me at home, (918) 336-4855.
I'll write these
columns on a regular basis, to keep you up-to-date as the legislative
session progresses. Together we can achieve what's best for Oklahoma.
represents District 11 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives.