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Governor Stitt Celebrates Oklahoma's Workforce Transformation with Ceremonial Signing

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Today, Governor Kevin Stitt held a ceremonial bill signing for the Workforce Transformation Act (SB 621). The governor was joined by the President and CEO of the State Chamber Chad Warmington, members of the Workforce Transformation Task Force, and bill co-authors Senator Pugh and Representative Hill, who have all played critical roles in re-shaping Oklahoma's approach to workforce development. 

"As Oklahoma's economic outlook continues to expand, it's pertinent that our workforce grows with the demand, which is why this session I challenged the Workforce Transformation Task Force with identifying our state's key areas of improvement on this front; and while our work isn't over, I'm thrilled about the momentum we've made," said Governor Stitt. "Through improvements like creating a Secretary of Workforce and signing SB 621, Oklahoma can set up the framework for meaningful solutions to grow, develop and maximize our state's labor pool to expand our state's economy and create better jobs for Oklahomans."

The Workforce Transformation Act creates the Oklahoma Workforce Commission. Led by private sector business leaders, the commission will help direct the state's workforce development strategy and initiatives.

"This is a huge step forward for Oklahoma. Workforce is the number one concern of businesses in our state. We appreciate the years of work that so many have put in to make this a reality. We thank the legislature and the governor for seeing this across the finish line.  Senate Bill 621 makes transformational changes to workforce development that will benefit Oklahoma. We are excited for the future growth and prosperity this will bring to our state," said Chad Warmington, President and CEO of the State Chamber.

"SB 621 has a state funding component to it. I want to ensure that for the first time in Oklahoma's history, the state is providing funds to assist with our workforce plan. We want to ensure when we're going out around the state and doing economic development, the workforce is available as companies are expanding, growing, and moving into the state of Oklahoma," said bill co-author Sen. Pugh.

"I believe this is the moment we'll look back on decades from now and know this was a pivotal shift for us as a state. This is a tremendous victory for our workforce, our families and for Oklahoma,” said bill co-author Rep. Hill. 

In April, Governor Stitt's Workforce Transformation Taskforce proposed final recommendations to the governor after conducting a several month long study. Through their findings, among other things, they proposed the State designate a "single owner" of workforce development that serves as a statewide coordinating body for agencies and stakeholders involved in workforce and talent development.

Last Modified on Jun 14, 2023
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