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Home » Another win! Oklahoma Attorney General finds House Bill 2263 amendments Constitutional

Another win! Oklahoma Attorney General finds House Bill 2263 amendments Constitutional

The Oklahoma Attorney General (OAG) Gentner Drummond published a second opinion on Wednesday, February 28, 2024, detailing why House Bill (HB) 2263 amending Title 69 Section 1703 is constitutional and does not violate the separation of powers provision in the Oklahoma Constitution. HB2263 divided the executive powers of appointment to the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority (OTA) Board to both the Senate and House and required financial conflict of interest disclosures of all board members.

During the 2023 Legislative Session, Oklahomans for Responsible Transportation (ORT) were successful in bringing HB 2263 from conception to new law: an incredible feat.

In response to this new law, the OTA sued the legislature in January of 2024 with a lawsuit (CV-2024-72)  arguing constitutionality.

In addition to the lawsuit, Senator Haste, Senate Transportation Committee Chairman,  sent a request for an official Attorney General Opinion asking if the changes enacted in HB2263 violate the Oklahoma Constitution.

While the OAG Opinion on HB2263 is not legally binding on the courts, it is entitled to great weight, and we are confident it will have a great, positive effect on the Court case.

Following this opinion, Amy Cerato, President of Oklahomans for Responsible Transportation (ORT) remarked that “We extend our gratitude to Representative Danny Sterling for hosting one of our legislative interim studies in Fall of 2022 and aligning with our policy statement, asserting that the “OTA Board membership should be appointed by the House and Senate, not just the Governor.” Representative Sterling demonstrated exceptional leadership in advocating for this bill on behalf of his constituents. We are also appreciative of the legislature for nearly unanimously overriding the Governor’s veto and enacting this bill into law. Within our group, we are fortunate to have exceptional legal and policy experts who draft impactful bills for the betterment of all Oklahomans. We eagerly anticipate continuing our grassroots advocacy within the legislature to implement further policy changes aimed at establishing appropriate oversight, ensuring due diligence, promoting sound engineering policies and procedures, maintaining strong financial practices, and safeguarding property rights.”

More information can be found in the February 28, 2024 OAG Press Release.