Platform Planks To Be Heard During Delegate Assembly

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This spring, OPEA solicited ideas from members to be considered as platform planks at this year’s annual convention and delegate assembly August 25th and 26th at The Lodge at Lake Murray State Park. Planks approved by the delegate assembly form the basis for OPEA’s legislative agenda during the next year and also serve as guidance for changing OPEA’s internal policies and procedures.

Throughout its history, OPEA has prided itself on being a member-driven organization and the platform process is one way members can have their voices heard. Both the OPEA board of directors and staff take the process very seriously and appreciate the thought and insight members bring to the process as they submit ideas and plans to improve state employement and retirement.

The consideration of the planks at the convention leads to honest discussion about the needs of state employees and retirees. It also sets the tone for how OPEA will work with lawmakers and state agency leaders to improve state employment and retirement.

The following is the list of planks submitted to OPEA.  Additional planks, not listed here, can be considered at the convention if the author obtains ten members’ signatures

These platform planks are carried over from last year’s delegate assembly. Since 2017 is the second year of Oklahoma’s two year legislative cycle, platform planks passed at last year’s assembly are carried over from the previous year. Those being carried over are as follows. If you have any questions about the planks you are urged to contact your Regional Director


State Employee Compensation and Benefits

Require pay raises for all state employees. Michael Alderson, Region 8, Connie Stockton, Region 11, Cindy Shewmake, Region 3

Prevent loss of earned annual leave due to “use or lose” provision in state law and require payment of hours over set limitsJamie Beck, Region 3

Provide $150 per month uniform allowance to all DOC and OJA uniformed staff up-front and monthly. Greg Stockton, Region 10

Increase SoonerSave match for employees under the defined benefit OPERS system from $25 to $50.  Joyce Walker, Region 10

Increase longevity pay. Randy Chitwood, Region 9

Provide 3 personal day leave requests per year for all state employees. Carrie Croy, Region 5

Require all state employees receive certain compensation for working “on-call.” Jamie Beck, Region 3

Require hours worked above normal work schedule per day to automatically count as overtime and be paid at time and a half rate. Connie Stockton, Retiree East

Require overtime be counted towards years of service for all state employeesGreg Stockton, Region 10

Increase paid holidays for state employees to include Good Friday. Courtney Fox, Region 11

Increase paid holidays for state employees to include employee birthday. Joyce Walker, Region 10

Tie Department of Corrections Probation &Parole Officers’ and Office of Juvenile Affairs Juvenile Justice Specialists’ salaries to those of other law enforcement agencies. Carrie Croy, Region 5

Increase Department of Corrections’ Correctional Officers starting pay to $15 per hour and Office of Juvenile Affairs Direct-Care staff to $13 per hour. Mike Rogers, Region 1

Require paid family leave for all state employees for the birth/adoption of a child or to care for a sick family member. Courtney Fox, Region 11

Change retirement rule of 90 to rule of 80 for state employees with 20 years service. Joyce Walker, Region 10

 State Government & Agency Issues

Require state budget be presented 30 days prior to end of legislative session. Tricia Parker, Region 5

Require all appropriations bills be heard by certain deadline in legislative session. Brenda Wise, Region 1

Require Department of Corrections report to legislature on staffing levels, overtime hours, staff turnover by facility, and include the private prisons. Mike Rogers, Region 1

Require all state agencies switch to bi-weekly payroll.  Jess Callahan, Region 11

Require all introduced bills be granted public hearing in legislative committee. Connie Stockton, Region 11

Require any legislative pay raise must be approved by majority vote of the people. Brenda Wise, Region 1

Increase the fine amount from $10k to $25k for hitting a road worker and potential loss of driver license for life. Rita Heath, Region 7

Mandate end of probationary status at 12 months and for promotions/transfers at 6 months. Dennis Pape, Region 5

Dock legislator pay and per diem when they are not present for legislative session or committee meetings. Carrie Croy, Region 5

Remove the cap on the Rainy Day Fund. Jess Callahan, Region 11

Retiree and Pension

Require a Cost of Living Adjustment for state employees who are retired for more than one year. Bob Zapffe, Region 5

Require study of pension systems’ anti-spiking efforts W.Lynn Hodges, Retiree West

Protect retirement systems from being raided by lawmakers in budget downturn years. Mike Rogers, Region 1


The following platform planks were newly submitted this year by OPEA members. They are also eligible to be heard at the convention.

State Employee Compensation and Benefits

Provide Roth IRA option on 457/401a plans. Robert Wherry, Region 5

Require that any state employee pay raise granted within any agency be provided to all state employees state-wide.  Frank Young, Region 5

Require that all military veterans earn points credited towards retirement. Eric Milligan, Region 5

 State Government & Agency Issues

Change merit rules to require outside attorney be used in grievance resolution process. Eileen Pearce, Region 5

Require OPEA representative on the Merit Protection Commission. Eileen Pearce, Region 5

Require redistricting legislative districts be conducted by non-partisan commission.  Carter Merkle, Region 6

OPEA Structure and Operations

Only allow OPEA convention to consider “top 16” platform planks. Eileen Pearce, Region 5