Solar panels, worker’s comp payouts among local delegation’s bills moving through Legislature

State lawmakers representing Carter County each have several bills currently moving through the legislative process that are being further considered in opposite chambers, according to the Oklahoma Legislature’s bill tracking website.

Rep. Tammy Townley (R-Lone Grove) and Sen. Jerry Alvord (R-Wilson) have co-authored a bill that would increase worker’s compensation payouts to the children of someone killed on the job. House Bill 1738 has seen several additions throughout the legislative process so far and currently sets minimum compensations from $25,000 to $100,000 along with a portion of the deceased’s weekly wage, depending on the number of children. The bill was passed through House and on Wednesday was referred to a Senate retirement committee for further consideration.

Townley is also the co-author of a bill that would protect future homeowners subject to HOA rules that want to install solar panels. House Bill 1023 prohibits any owners association rule that would restrict a property owner from installing solar panels on their property as long as some particular installation rules are followed. Even if approved in its current form, HOA rules prohibiting solar panels before the bill’s potential passage could still be grandfathered in. The bill passed through the House on Wednesday and was referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee for further consideration.

Rep. Josh Cantrell (R-Kingston) has authored a bill that would allow law enforcement to issue a traffic citation for littering near in a lot of places. House Bill 1891 would impose fine limits of between $200 to $500 and governs the distribution of any collected fines. Another provision allows those who report violations to remain anonymous. The bill passed through the House in early March and was referred to the Senate Public Safety committee on Wednesday.

The current legislative session ends Friday, May 26.