Several measures were enacted this Session within the Criminal Justice system.

HB 1121 creates the Oklahoma Domestic Violence Court Act of 2017 which allows any district or municipal court to establish a domestic violence court program and appoint a judge to preside over matters that arise in the context of domestic violence.

HB 1466 creates a procedure to allow the victim of domestic violence to transfer wireless telephone accounts or household utility accounts to their name when the account was previously in someone else’s name. A court order containing relevant information is sent to the wireless service provider or household utility provider to make the transfer.

HB 1468 creates the “Hidden Predator Act.” This measure provides that the prosecution of rape, forcible sodomy and other related sex crimes must be commenced by the 45th birthday of the alleged victim and deletes the requirement that the victim notify law enforcement within 12 years after the discovery of the crime.

The measures provides that no prosecution may be based solely upon a victim’s memories recovered through psychotherapy and establishes that any person who knowingly and willfully makes a false claim shall be, upon conviction, guilty of a felony.

HB 1123 makes it a misdemeanor to trespass on property containing a critical infrastructure facility that is punishable by up to six months imprisonment, a fine of not less than $10,000, or both.

If a trespasser actually damages or tampers with equipment, the crime becomes a felony, punishable by imprisonment of not more than 10 years, a fine of $100,000, or both. If an organization is found to be a conspirator with persons who are4 found to have committed any of the trespassing crimes described, they will be punished by a fine that is 10 times the amount of the fine authorized by the appropriate provision of law.

SB 342 creates a taskforce to oversee an analysis of existing laws, policies and practices relating to fines, fees and costs assessed on persons interacting with the criminal justice process.

The 12-member task force is to examine the percentage of owed fines, fees and costs that are actually paid, as well as how local and state governmental budgets are supported by these fines, fees and costs. The task force is to submit a report of its findings and recommendations by Nov. 30, 2019.

In efforts to strengthen Oklahoma’s economic development and tourism, lawmakers authorized the creation and extension of several tax credits to bring new tourism attractions to the state and show their support and commitment to the growth of the aerospace industry.

HB 2131 creates the Oklahoma Economic Development Act of 2017, which establishes a framework for the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department to offer inducements in the form of sales tax credits to companies creating or expanding tourism within the state. Between 10-25 percent of the approved costs may be reimbursed for the projects, with a cap of $15 million each year.

SB 120 extends the sunset date of three tax credits that benefit aerospace engineers and their employers until tax year 2025. The extended tax credits provide an income tax credit equal to: 50 percent of the tuition reimbursed by an employer; 10 percent of the compensation paid to a qualified employee who graduated from a state college for the first-fifth year of employment; and, $5,000 per year for up to five years for every qualified aerospace employee.

SB 872 allows the Office of Management and Enterprise Services to certify that at least $10 million has been deposited into the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum Completion Fund to allow the issuance of bonds funding construction of the museum. This will lead to the transfer of the center and museum to Oklahoma City.

It is my honor to serve you as your state representative! Please feel free to contact me anytime.

Rep. Will Fourkiller (D- District 86) represents the 86th district in the Oklahoma House of Representatives. He can be reached at will.fourkiller@okhouse.gov‬‬‬‬ or at 405-557-7394.