Rep. Williams: Public lands, agriculture focus of two House resolutions

By Rep. Danny Williams

After the Legislature’s deadline two weeks ago to pass bills through the chamber they originated in, we took a brief break to give legislative staff time to transfer the remaining bills between chambers. We’ve now begun considering Senate bills in House committees, and we’ll start hitting the ground running next week.

Since we just started hearing Senate bills in committee, we didn’t have much work to do on the House floor, but we did approve several resolutions in the past few weeks that I wanted to highlight.

On Thursday, the House voted to adopt House Resolution 1002, emphasizing the important role our state’s public lands play in our economy, heritage and quality of life. In Oklahoma, state and federally-owned public lands make up over 6% of our land.

Public lands provide an avenue for people of all backgrounds to enjoy outdoor recreation, as well as provide jobs that contribute significantly to our economy. These lands provide habitats for Oklahoma’s diverse wildlife, including endangered and threatened species.

According to a study conducted by the Outdoor Industry Association, outdoor recreation generates an estimated $10.6 billion in consumer spending and supporting more than 97,000 jobs in the state. It’s important that these lands are preserved for future generations of Oklahomans to enjoy, and I was glad to coauthor and vote in favor of this resolution.

Last week, the House adopted a resolution encouraging Oklahomans to enjoy meat and poultry during the week of March 22-26 in honor of “Meat All Week,” a program started by the Oklahoma Dept. of Agriculture.

The production of beef, pork and poultry in our state contributes $18 billion annually to the state economy, and we have the fifth highest number of farms in the country. Animal agriculture and direct care of livestock is a meaningful way of life to more than 100,000 of our state’s citizens, and I was proud that the House stood today to support these hard-working Oklahomans.

I want to thank the thousands of Oklahoma agriculture workers who work so hard to help feed people across our state and country as well as throughout the world!

And thank you to the people of House District 28 for allowing me to represent you at the State Capitol!

Rep. Danny Williams, a Republican, represents House District 28 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives. His district includes Seminole County and northern Pottawatomie County.