The Pryor Times

Local News

May 13, 2009

Legislators discuss monument, health care

Legislators at Eggs & Issues last Friday said the proposal for a Ten Commandments monument passed the House of Representatives.

“I voted for it,” said State Representative Ben Sherrer. “I’m a big fan of the Ten Commandments.”

House bill 1330 authorizes a monument bearing the Ten Commandments to be placed in the State Capitol Park in Oklahoma City.

Sherrer added the state would be better served if everyone who supported the monument of the Ten Commandments lived by them.

Emcee Blaine Jones pointed out, “The good thing is, it passed. The bad thing is, they’ll be written in Hebrew.”

Jones commended the local representatives, saying, “They are taking care of their constituents as best they can,” even on issues with which they may not neces-

sarily agree.

“We are well represented,” Jones said.

With two weeks left in the session, State Senator Sean Burrage said the $7 billion state budget is down this year by $900 million.

Burrage said all government agencies have taken a cut of 8 to 9 percent.

Burrage said the national stimulus package will backfuel education, health care and the Department of Human Services.

“The question is,” said Burrage, “does the stimulus package work?”

Burrage said the national economy must rebound by spring 2011, “or it will be a rough legislative year.”

A bill on rural ambulance service passed the House, said Sherrer. The duty-to-act requires services such as Mayes Emergency Services Trust Authority (MESTA) to leave its territorial boundaries if it is the closest service to people in jeopardy who have no service.

Sherrer feels the duty-to-act puts Mayes County people in jeopardy who have taxed themselves to pay for their service.

The bill will give all counties two years to get funds in place for an ambulance service. If counties do not establish their own ambulance services, the duty-to-act goes away.

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