Senator Murdock addresses Texas County residents in town hall meeting

By: 
Kaley Conner
Staff Writer

GUYMON - On Thursday, Dec. 19, Senator Casey Murdock visited Guymon to speak to citizens about his plans for legislation in the upcoming session. Additionally, Murdock also gave an update on the current conditions of the state and requested action from his constituents.

Murdock, in contrast to running approximately 60 bills last session, has chosen to limit this session’s number to less than half, choosing only to run the bills which he believes to be most important. Chairman of both the agriculture and wildlife committees, as well as a rancher by trade, Senator Murdock is outwardly passionate about agricultural issues in rural district 27. Consequently, he plans to push several agriculture-related measures

Murdock aims to place a cap on the amount of land the Department of Wildlife Conservation can purchase. Currently, the department owns nearly 1.5 million acres of land, and 350,000 of them are unavailable for lease. Murdock claims the criteria for leasing the nearly 1.2 million available acres "doesn't work for agriculture." Additionally, he fears government competition with citizens for land ownership and potential hunting bans on public land.

Additionally, Murdock will push to increase cattle theft penalties and legalize vehicular carry of loaded long guns for ranchers.

For non-agriculture related causes, Murdock plans to reinstate 1,000 ft. drug-free zones around schools. He will also push legislation limiting pharmaceutical companies to charge each consumer no more than $100 per month for insulin.

Reporting on the current consitions of the state, Murdock announced a predicted $300 million surplus in the budget and a current balance of $1 billion in savings.

Senator Murdock also urged citizens to participate in the upcoming census due to its crucial role in determining amounts of federal funding allocated to the Panhandle. Additionally, he addressed two ballot initiatives, one on a new district boundary determination procedure and the other on Medicaid expansion. He encouraged "no" votes on both initiatives.

Murdock plans a press release early in the new year and encouraged his constituents to "keep an eye out" for the publication.

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