Murdock’s Minutes

Murdock’s Minutes

The first session of the 58th Legislature is now just a few weeks away, and preparations continue at the Capitol. I am very happy to share that I’ve been asked by Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat to continue to serve as chair of the Senate Agriculture and Wildlife Committee for the next two years. I’ll also hold seats on the Senate Transportation Committee, the Appropriations Subcommittee on Natural Resources and Regulatory Services, and the Energy Committee.

Each legislative session, we are charged with writing and passing a balanced budget, as well as considering legislation that creates new law, or that amends or repeals existing laws. But every 10 years, the Legislature has an additional task to complete during the session. We have the responsibility of using the just-completed U.S. census population count to redraw the boundaries for Senate, House and congressional districts.

By law, each state Senate seat must contain as close to the same number of people as possible. It’s the same for state House and congressional districts. The numbers we use for this redistricting process come directly from the census. Because population growth or declines don’t occur at the same rate in each district, boundary lines must be redrawn. Populations tend to be more concentrated in urban areas as opposed to rural Oklahoma. That’s why I currently represent communities in nine counties, while Senators in other parts of the state may only represent people who live in just one county.



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