Oklahoma State Senator Greg Treat appoints range of officials after election as President Pro Tempore
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Published: 12-Jan-2019

OKLAHOMA CITY – In wake of his formal election as President Pro Tempore of the Oklahoma State Senate early this week, Senator Greg Treat, R-Oklahoma City, has appointed several Oklahomans to state board and commissions.
Members of the Oklahoma Senate on Tuesday (January 8) voted Senator Greg Treat as president pro tempore, the chamber’s top leadership post. He previously served as the majority floor leader, the second-highest leadership office in the upper chamber, and was selected by Senate Republicans in 2018 as their choice to lead the Senate.

During organizational day events, the Senate made the designation official. 
Under the state Constitution, the lieutenant governor presides over the Senate. By custom she or he seldom exercises that function. The pro tempore (“Pro tem” is the term used in Oklahoma) is the functioning leader of the upper chamber. 

“I am humbled and honored to serve as the leader of the Oklahoma Senate. I very much appreciate my colleagues for their trust in my leadership and look forward to the challenge ahead. I also want to thank my wife and children. Without their love and support, I would not be able to serve in the Senate,” Sen. Treat said in a statement sent to CapitolBeatOK and other news organizations.
“As leader of the Senate I promise our chamber will work hard, we’ll work together across political parties, and we’ll work toward policies that are good for all Oklahomans. There are certainly challenges facing our state, but there is nothing standing in our way that we can’t overcome together. I am optimistic about the future of our state and feel very blessed to be in a position to help lead Oklahoma to an even better and brighter future.”
The Senate pro tempore regularly makes appointments to fill spots on the various state agencies, boards and commissions. The governor and House speaker also make appointments. Pro Temp Treat said as the new leader of the Senate he will emphasize and prioritize the appointment process.
“The appointment process is one of the important duties of the Senate leader because agencies, boards, and commissions have a lot of input and oversight over issues like education, health care, and public safety,” Treat said. “It’s important we attract qualified, energetic, experienced people to serve our state. If you are interested in helping us move Oklahoma toward a better and brighter future, please contact my office to let us know about your interest and willingness to serve.”
His first list of appointments included:
    • Brett Coble of Ardmore to the Long Term Care Services and Supports Advisory Committee for a term serving at the pleasure of the Senate president pro tempore. Coble is serving in a new position as a member who represents for-profit nursing homes.
    • Sheryl Lovelady of Oklahoma City to the Board on Judicial Compensation for a term serving at the pleasure of the Senate president pro tempore. Lovelady is serving as a member who represents a civic organization and replaces William Hubbard, who resigned.
    • Molly Wehrenberg of Edmond to the Oklahoma Commission on the Status of Women for a term beginning immediately and expiring June 30, 2022. Wehrenberg replaces Bernice Mitchell, who resigned.
    • Jim Laurick of Edmond to the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Retirement System board for the remainder of a four-year term expiring June 30, 2021. Laurick is being reappointed to the board.

Sen. Treat lives in Oklahoma City with his wife Maressa and their three children: Mason, Cooper, and Olivia. The Treat family attends Frontline Church. He was elected in a 2011 special election to represent District 47, which encompasses northwest Oklahoma City and portions of Edmond, Deer Creek, and Bethany. Treat serves on the executive committees of both the National Conference of State Legislatures and the Southern Legislative Conference.
The state Constitution calls upon the Legislature to meet before the start of each two-year session to formally elect its leaders and certify the previous year’s election results. He designated his leadership team late last year. 

That group includes: 
    • Senator Kim David, R-Porter, Majority Floor Leader
    • Senator Roger Thompson, R-Okemah, Appropriations chair
    • Senator Jason Smalley, R-Stroud, Majority Caucus chair
    • Senator Rob Standridge, R-Norman, Majority Whip
    • Senator Stephanie Bice, R-Oklahoma City, Assistant Floor Leader
    • Senator Frank Simpson, R-Springer, Assistant Floor Leader
    • Senator Dave Rader, R-Tulsa, Majority Caucus vice chair
    • Senator Julie Daniels, R-Bartlesville, Assistant Majority Whip
    • Senator Casey Murdock, R-Felt, Assistant Majority Whip
    • Senator Marty Quinn, R-Claremore, Assistant Majority Whip
    • Senator Darcy Jech, R-Kingfisher, Rural Caucus chair

In terms of substantive legislation for the upcoming session, Treat is the author of Senate Bill 1.
S.B. 1 would create a Legislative Office of Fiscal Transparency (LOFT). Treat has indicated the office would engage in substantive, recurring and methodical investigations (examinations might be a less confrontation word) of government agencies. CapitolBeatOK, an independent online news service, designated S.B. 1’s emergence and Treat’s sponsorship of the propsal one of the top 15 news stories of 2015 in Oklahoma government and policy developments. (https://capitolbeatok.worldsecuresystems.com/reports/oklahoma-news-in-2018-part-iii-capitolbeatok-designates-more-stories-of-significance-horn-s-fifth-di)

NOTE: Pat McGuigan, founder and editor of CapitolBeatOK, contributed to this report.

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