by Jessica Dietrich, Director of Government Relations and Public Policy
2022 Legislative Session
This week is the bill filing deadline ahead of the 2022 legislative session which begins in just a few short weeks. Legislators requested a total of 3,019 bills ahead of legislative session. New bill requests, combined with carryover bills from the 2021 legislative session means there will be approximately 5,500 bills that will be viable as the legislature convenes in February. This deadline this week means that bills will begin to have more detail in them, allowing advocates (and all Oklahomans) the opportunity to consider potential impacts of the proposed policies.
Federal Budget Reconciliation Update
Senate negotiations on the contents of the Build Back Better social spending package fell apart at the end of 2022. The $1.75 trillion spending package contained promising child food security provisions such as the nationwide expansion of the Summer EBT program, providing states the option to implement statewide Community Eligibility Provisions for free school meals, and grants for school kitchen equipment and healthy meals demonstration projects. Meaningful negotiations have not yet started again. Congress will now turn its attention to the federal budget, which is set to expire in February. Some portions of the Build Back Better plan could become part of other packages Congress takes up, including the budget. We will continue to track this closely.
P-EBT Deadline Approaching
If your child received virtual instruction in 2020-21 and you believe your child is eligible and you have not yet received a P-EBT card or believe the amount on the card is incorrect, please fill out the review form on OSDE’s page by February 28, 2022.
Oklahoma has launched a website to stay up to date on the latest information on the state portion of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. Included on the site is an opportunity for Oklahomans to formally or informally weigh in on how these funds should be used. Organizations may submit a detailed response to the project questionnaire, which is intended to be used for specific projects. There is also an idea questionnaire available for Oklahomans to provide input on how the funds should be used, without the need to propose a fully-planned project. Visit the state ARPA website here.
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