Contact: Mark Williams
COVID-19 SHORTENS LEGISLATIVE SESSION TO 37 DAYS;
GOVERNOR VETOES 18 BILLS, LEGISLATURE OVERTURNS 10
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK, June 12, 2020 – The Research Institute for Economic Development (RIED), a non-partisan organization and producer of the annual RIED Report, a grading system of Oklahoma legislators’ votes on key economic development and business issues, announced today its 2020 RIED Report. The scores were awarded to lawmakers who served during the second regular session of the 57th Oklahoma Legislature.
Under the RIED evaluation system, legislators earn points when they support job creation and economic development issues or vote against legislation that is harmful to job creation and economic development. A score of 70 and above represents a passing grade while 69 and below represents a failing grade. Ten measures were utilized to compile the 2020 RIED Report.
“Due to COVID-19, the legislature only met 37 days, and the cross-chamber committee process was eliminated which contributed to 10 business-related bills being scored,” said Mark Williams, RIED president. “Normally, 16-20 business bills would be scored, but despite the session’s historic nature, time constraints and large number of gubernatorial vetoes, I am extremely pleased an overwhelming majority of both chambers embraced these ten pro-business measures.”
For the first time in RIED’s 23-year history, over one-half of the legislature (80) scored a perfect 100, with only 33 members having a failing score of 69 or less. Overall, 114 of 147 legislators received passing scores of 70 or higher, including 35 of 47 Senate members and 79 of 100 House members. Two seats, SD 28 and HD 89, were vacant this session.
“Obviously, COVID-19 not only shortened the legislative session but changed its landscape in many ways, particularly in the number of health-related bills considered,” said Greg Love, RIED board chairman. “To have the largest number of perfects scores in RIED history is very impressive, however it is important to note that those scores are not just a reflection of fewer overall bills being scored. It is because they are solid pro-business bills that will help Oklahoma’s overall business environment, and at the end of the day, that is what is most important. My hope is the legislature, despite any changes this fall’s elections may bring, and Governor Stitt will continue to promote pro-business legislation that positions Oklahoma as one of America’s premier business opportunities.”
The 2020 RIED Report is available at riedreport.com.
The Research Institute for Economic Development was founded in 1997 and promotes economic growth through the evaluation of business, job and economic growth issues considered by the Oklahoma Legislature. RIED is non-partisan and does not lobby issues, endorse candidates or campaigns.