Contact: State Rep. Kenton Patzkowsky

Office: (405) 557-7384

First things first, I want to say thank you to all of the people from Oklahoma House District 61 who voted for me in the recent general election. I enjoyed meeting everyone throughout the election process and getting to hear your ideas for how we can make Oklahoma a more prosperous state and an even better place to live and work. Thank you also to all of the people who helped me reach office. I appreciate everyoneís hard work.

One of the things I heard most often as I visited people throughout our district is a desire to better address our transportation needs in Northwest Oklahoma. We move massive amounts of agriculture products as weíve been challenged to feed an ever-growing world population. Our transportation system needs to be in shape to meet this demand. This is at the top of my list of needs to address.

I also heard that we need to better address education, particularly the shortage of certified teachers in the state. Legislators last year increased the minimum salary schedule for teachers for the first time in a decade. That should help us secure more certified teachers, but weíll be looking at other measures as well such as better administrative support for these dedicated public professionals. 

Now that Iíve been sworn in to serve for the next two years in the 57th Legislature, things are already moving fast.

My first deadline has already passed Ė to request bills and resolutions. Now Iím working on substantive language. In future columns Iíll give more details of the individual bills Iíve requested.

Next up, weíll have Organizational Day on Jan. 8, when newly elected members are certified and we formally elect House leadership. The governor, lieutenant governor and other statewide elected officials get sworn in Jan. 14. The legislative session starts Feb 4. 

I have to say Iím very encouraged about the makeup of the House body. Weíve got a great group of new lawmakers Ė 46 in all in the House Ė joining 55 veteran representatives. Everyone Iíve met so far has been positive about moving our state forward and making laws that make sense for Oklahomans. This looks like it will be a very productive Legislative session.

We also have a very impressive governor-elect. Iím convinced that greater accountability in government is coming.

On another note, we have a page program in the House. Any interested high school seniors, juniors or sophomores can reach out to me at my house email and Iíll get you an application. Pages run messages to the representatives during session and get to hold their own mock legislative session. Itís good experience for the next generation of leaders.

If I donít see you in person, I want to wish each of you a Merry Christmas and a very happy New Year.

Iíll keep in touch. For now, Iím headiní to the farm house.

Kenton Patzkowsky serves District 61 of the Oklahoma House of Representatives. He can be reached by phone at (405) 557-7384 or via email at kenton.patzkowsky@okhouse.gov.



Kenton Patzkowsky