Governor Ceremonially Signs Sanders’ DUI Victims’ Impact, Dyslexia Bills

Mike Seals - August 11, 2020 9:58 am

Governor Kevin Stitt was in Claremore Thursday to sign Rhonda Bear's pardon.

Governor Ceremonially Signs Sanders’ DUI Victims’ Impact, Dyslexia Bills  

OKLAHOMA CITY – House Majority Leader Mike Sanders, R-Kingfisher, today attended the ceremonial bill signing for House Bills 2804 and 2877.

HB 2877 strengthens the role of victims’ impact panels in helping to stop driving under the influence (DUI) offenses in Oklahoma and will help reduce the number of repeat offenders. The measure was a request by victims’ impact panel programs currently operating in Oklahoma. It follows up on successful DUI legislation Sanders passed in 2016 that strengthened prosecution of repeat drunk drivers by creating the Impaired Driving Elimination Act, moving all DUI cases to a court of record, ensuring district attorneys statewide would have access to records of DUI offenses to reduce repeat offenses.

HB 2804 requires dyslexia screening for kindergarten through third-grade students not reading on grade level beginning in the 2022-23 school year. The bill builds upon House Bill 1228, passed last year, which provides professional development for teachers across Oklahoma to help them better recognize signs of dyslexia in their students.

Sanders said both pieces of legislation are items of significant importance to him during his legislative career.

“I have fought always on the side of victims of crime, to see that their voices are heard and their needs considered in matters of criminal sentencing,” Sanders said. “At the same time, I’ve been a strong advocate for children diagnosed with dyslexia who too often got left behind their peers in reading and other academic subjects because their condition remained undetected or undiagnosed.

“I’m incredibly grateful to have won passage of these two important pieces of legislation and to see them become part of the Oklahoma statute. Victims of drunk drivers will now have an opportunity to speak to those who commit this heinous crime, and children statewide will benefit from screening that will help them learn to read on grade level and achieve academic success.”

Both bills were signed into law in May and took effect July 1. Ceremonial bill signings allow lawmakers and those influential in helping to draft the legislation or those most affected by it to attend.

Sanders thanked State Sen. Stephanie Bice, R-Oklahoma City, and State Sen. Lonnie Paxton, R-Tuttle, the Senate authors of HB 2804 and HB 2877, respectively, for their work in getting the bills passed in the state Senate. He also thanked members of the Dyslexia and Education Task Force, the Decoding Dyslexia Oklahoma and the State Department of Education for their help in drafting HB 2804, and members of the victims’ impact panel programs for their help with HB 2877. Representatives from all groups attended today’s bill signings.

(PHOTO) House Majority Leader Mike Sanders along with Janella Tears, Jessi Romero, Erin Fowler Howell and Fred Jordan from Victims Impact Panel of Oklahoma attend a ceremonial bill signing for House Bill 2877 in Gov. Kevin Stitt’s office on Monday, Aug. 10.

 

(PHOTO) House Majority leader Mike Sanders along with his wife, Nellie, and sons Davis and Walker, and Tiffany Jenkins and Michelle Keiper from Decoding Dyslexia Oklahoma attend a ceremonial bill signing for House Bill 2804 in Gov. Kevin Stitt’s office on Monday, Aug. 10.

 

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