The following is a look at what is on the ballot of the Nov. 3 election for Okfuskee County voters. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. Check your voter ID card for your voting location or visit the online voter portal at www.ok.gov/elections/OVP.
Early voting will take place at the Okfuskee County Courthouse on Thursday, Oct. 29 and Friday, Oct. 30 from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. and on Saturday, Oct. 3 from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
The deadline to request an absentee ballot is 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 27. Absentee ballot application forms are available online or at the Okfuskee County Election Board located inside the county courthouse. Call 918-623-0105 or visit www.elections.ok.gov for more information. Completed applications can be delivered to the County Election Board office by mail, fax, e-mail, or an agent of the voter can hand deliver an application. Absentee ballots must be returned by election day.
State Question 814 (Decrease TSET fund payments)
A “yes” vote supports decreasing the percentage of money (from 75% to 25%) that is deposited to the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) Fund from funds the state receives from tobacco settlements and directing the state legislature to appropriate funds to secure federal matching funds for Medicaid expansion in Oklahoma, which was previously approved by voters. A “no” vote opposes decreasing appropriations made to the TSET Fund.
Background: Oklahoma receives money annually from tobacco companies under the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement (MSA). Of the total MSA payments to the state, 75% is deposited into the TSET Fund, which was designed to fund tobacco use prevention and smoking cessation programs, and 25% is deposited into a special fund, the Tobacco Settlement Fund, which is subject to appropriation by the state legislature.
SQ 814 would switch the deposit percentages so that 25% of MSA payments would be deposited in the TSET Fund and 75% would be deposited in the Tobacco Settlement Fund. SQ 814 directs the legislature to appropriate remaining money in the special fund to secure federal matching funds for Medicaid expansion. The state legislature also passed Senate Bill 1529 to take effect if SQ 814 is approved by voters. SB 1529 makes changes to the percentage of funds in the Tobacco Settlement Fund that are directed to the Attorney General’s Evidence Fund so that the amount of money being directed remains about the same ($4.6 million) under current law.
State Question 805 (Criminal History in Sentencing and Sentence Modification)
A “yes” vote supports prohibiting using a person’s past non-violent felony convictions to impose a greater (enhanced) sentence when sentencing a person convicted of a non-violent felony; and providing for sentence modifications for eligible individuals serving or set to serve sentences that were enhanced based on past felony convictions.
A “no” vote opposes the amendment, thereby maintaining that a person convicted of a non-violent felony can receive greater (enhanced) sentences based on past felony convictions.
Supporters and opponents
Yes on 805 is leading the campaign in support of the initiative. Supporters include the ACLU of Oklahoma and Oklahomans for Criminal Justice Reform, which sponsored State Questions 780 and 781 in 2016. Yes on 805 argued, “Our incarceration crisis is fueled in large part by harsh, extreme sentences that are stacked against Oklahomans to punish them for previous mistakes… These enhanced sentences unfairly punish Oklahomans for debts they have already paid and tip the balance of legal proceedings even more toward prosecutors. Unfair, extreme sentencing leads to more of our family members, friends, neighbors, and fellow Oklahomans in prison for longer periods of time. The result? Oklahomans pay more in taxes to imprison our people, reduce our workforce, and leave families in poverty longer.”
Oklahomans United Against 805 is leading the campaign in opposition to State Question 805. Opponents include Governor Kevin Stitt, Oklahoma district attorneys, Oklahoma Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, and Help In Crisis. Candida Manion, executive director of the Oklahoma Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, said, “When abusers aren’t held accountable, the violence escalates and that’s when they end up killing someone. In Oklahoma, we don’t hold offenders accountable already, but whatever was there, [SQ 805] will remove that, making it worse.”
Donald J. Trump/Michael R. Pence (R)
Jo Jorgensen/Jeremy Spike Cohen (L)
Joseph R. Biden/Kamala D. Harris (D)
Jade Simmons/Claudeliah J. Roze (I)
Kanye West/Michelle Tidball (I)
Brock Pierce/Karla Ballard (I)
Todd Hiett (R)
Todd Hagopian (L)
United States Senator
Jim Inhofe (R)
Robert Murphy (L)
Abby Broyles (D)
Joan Farr (I)
A.D. Nesbit (I)
United States Representative – District 02
Markwayne Mullin (R)
Richie Castaldo (L)
Danyell Lanier (D)
State Senator – District 7
Warren Hamilton (R)
Jerry L. Donathan (D)
State Representative – District 24
Logan J. Phillips (R)
Steve Kouplen (D)
John Woods (R)
James “Jim” Rasmussen (D)
Supreme Court District 1
Supreme Court District 6
Supreme Court District 9
Court of Criminal Appeals District 2
Court of Criminal Appeals District 3
Court of Civil Appeals District 1 – Office 2
Court of Civil Appeals District 2 – Office 1
Court of Civil Appeals District 2 – Office 2