Representative Ellyn Hefner

Hi, I’m Ellyn Hefner and I represent the people of Oklahoma’s 87th District.


News & Announcements

Aug 29, 2023
Recent Posts

House Democrats Call on Speaker of the House to Form Special Bipartisan Committee to Investigate State Superintendent

OKLAHOMA CITY – Today, House Democrats called on the Speaker of the House to form a special bipartisan committee to investigate possible impeachment charges for State Superintendent of Public Instruction Ryan Walters amid recent bomb threats at Tulsa area elementary schools believed to be linked to Walters' rhetoric about Tulsa Public Schools. “Oklahomans deserve a public school system where parents, students and teachers feel safe to go to school and the needs of our students are prioritized over dangerous political rhetoric,” said House Democratic Caucus Chair Trish Ranson, D-Stillwater. House Democratic Leader Cyndi Munson, D-Oklahoma City said the special bipartisan committee would investigate the current state superintendent to determine if his actions rise to the level of impeachment. “Allocating funds for public education should be free of corruption or political gain. There is already evidence of Walters’ corruption through misspent federal dollars along with discrepancies in his campaign finances. Paired with his toxic rhetoric that is impacting the safety of our schools, we believe it is more than enough to, at the very least, investigate him,” Leader Munson said. Rep. Provenzano mentioned that the rhetoric from the state superintendent has been harmful and potentially compromised the safety of school children. She also believes he is willfully neglecting his duty of office. “The rhetoric from the state superintendent has, up until now, been designed to distract and ?sow chaos. But now, elementary schools in the Tulsa area have received bomb threats as a ?result of disinformation shared by him. Our children deserve to be safe. The willful neglect of ?that duty, even in the highest offices in our state, cannot and will not be ?overlooked. Enough is enough,” Rep. Provenzano added. Leader Munson said, "We share in the growing frustration of Oklahomans across our state who want action to address their deep concerns for the future of public education. It is now time for action." -END-

Aug 22, 2023

Hefner Receives Fellowship to Study Disability Justice

OKLAHOMA CITY – Rep. Ellyn Hefner, D-Oklahoma City was selected to attend the Southern Policymakers Advancing Representative Community (SPARC) Fellowship. The SPARC Fellowship is an opportunity for elected officials across 14 southern states to: Support policymakers in collaborative learning about disability justice, To teach best practices for serving disabled constituents and the broader disability community, Bring together policymakers across the South to share strategy for disability justice and inclusion. “I'm most excited about collaborating with other states about what is working and what needs to change. It's important to challenge misconceptions around people who have a disability. Ensuring that we develop policies that advance the ability of people with disabilities to have meaningful work and a consistent presence in a community is crucial to their ability to live a good life,” Rep. Hefner said. As a freshman representative, Hefner has been a fierce advocate for Oklahomans with disabilities. During her first session, Rep. Hefner authored two bills which would have expedited services and expanded opportunities for Oklahomans with intellectual disabilities.  HB2716 would have increased oversight and transparency for Oklahomans with intellectual disabilities receiving community or home-based services. The proposed legislation passed the House 89-0. HB2718, the Oklahoma Promise Opportunity Scholarship Act, would have provided tuition-only scholarships to students with intellectual disabilities attending a qualified post-secondary program designed to support students with intellectual disabilities. The bill also passed the House 89-0. Hefner has three interim studies around disability justice in Oklahoma.  Workforce and uncovering state systems to increase competitive integrated employment. Looking at available systems in the state to develop and expand access to inclusive higher education for students with an intellectual disability. Sub minimum wage and meaningful work for Oklahomans with an intellectual developmental disability. -END-

Apr 28, 2023
Recent Posts

House Passes Bill to Extend OK Promise to Students with Intellectual Disabilities

OKLAHOMA CITY – The House this week unanimously passed a bill that will open Oklahoma Promise scholarships to students with intellectual disabilities.   Senate Bill 322 creates the Oklahoma Higher Education Tuition Aid Act - Oklahoma Higher Learning Access Trust Fund to provide students with intellectual disabilities tuition grants for attending comprehensive transition and postsecondary programs. The measure details financial and academic eligibility and authorizes the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education to administer the program.   Rep. Mark McBride, R-Moore, is the House author of the measure.   "I want every student to be able to achieve the highest level of education they desire," McBride said. "I'm thrilled to give students with intellectual disabilities the same opportunity as their peers to apply for this funding. I'm also very proud of the bipartisan effort that strengthened this bill and earned it's passage in the House."   Rep. Ellyn Hefner, D-Oklahoma City, co-authored the bill and presented it on the House floor.   "Senate Bill 322 is an excellent example of not only bipartisan legislation but also cooperative work between the House and Senate," Hefner said. "This bill marries two great pieces of legislation – House Bill 2718, the Oklahoma Higher Learning Access Trust Fund and the Oklahoma Promise Opportunity Scholarship Act, and Senate Bill 322, the Oklahoma Higher Education Tuition Aid Act - Oklahoma Higher Learning Access Trust Fund. Senate Bill 322 levels the playing field for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities by providing them the same opportunities as their peers to fund attendance at one of our three state universities that have a program for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities or to fund attendance at one of our great Career Tech programs. I am appreciative to Rep. McBride and Senator Seifried for coming together to create this important legislation for Oklahoma students."   Oklahoma’s Promise, originally designated as the Oklahoma Higher Learning Access Program, was created by the Legislature in 1992 to help students who meet certain income, academic and conduct requirements to earn a college or technology center tuition scholarship. The program is administered by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.   SB 322 was amended in the House, so it now moves back to the state Senate for further consideration. Sen. Ally Seifried, R-Claremore, is the principal author of SB 322.