The Duncan Banner

May 17, 2013

Senator Inhofe key speaker at GOP Fish Fry

Toni Hopper
The Duncan Banner

DUNCAN — Republicans from throughout Oklahoma will gather Saturday at the Stephens County Fair & Expo Center in Duncan, for the 9th annual GOP Fish Fry. This year, they will get a chance to hear U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe, as he is the keynote speaker and is expected to arrive just before 5 p.m. for the event.

Inhofe, R-Tulsa, is a senior member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, and has been instrumental in the passing of the Water Resources Development Act of 2013, or S. 601. The measure passed 83-14 in the Senate on Wednesday and authorizes new projects for water infrastructure for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Inhofe said in an Associated Press story that it would eliminate red tape and help reduce the backlog of unfinished water projects.

That includes the construction of major navigation and flood risk management projects. Inhofe entered amendments to the Act, including the expansion of the Port of Catoosa, in Tulsa.

Additionally, the Act allows for examination of unfair federal water pricing practices. Duncan, like many communities throughout the country, have to look at their long-term water supplies. Oklahoma is still struggling to recover from the drought. Lake levels are down, including Waurika Lake, which is overseen by the Corps out of Tulsa.

It is not known what topics Inhofe will speak about at the Fish Fry, and he does have plans to meet with members of the media prior to the actual event. After that, he will join in a private reception.

Inhofe is scheduled to speak at 6:15 p.m. to the entire crowd.

This year, about 600 people are expected to attend. The event is one of the largest Republican gatherings, second only to the state convention and has in the past, attracted upwards of 800 attendees. Leon Farris is Stephens County Republican Party Chairman this year.

Event chairman is Steve Fair. There will also be an award presented, the Dr. Gerald Beasley Award.

The event includes the fish fry dinner, a silent auction and a live auction. The fundraiser helps the county party secure a headquarters facility during election years and also helps with local candidates during their campaigns.

Tickets are available in advance and at the door. For information, call 580-656-7951.