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Area leaders in capital to advocate with state

People from Lawton, Duncan, Altus, Elgin, Walters and other area communities will be in Oklahoma City this evening advocating for the region during the annual Southwest Oklahoma Legislative Reception.

Count Chris Deal, president of the Duncan Chamber of Commerce, among fans of the important gathering, which this year will take place from 5-7 p.m. at the Oklahoma History Center across from the Capitol. It will be Deal's eighth such reception, and he sees it as an opportunity not just to talk about local priorities with local elected leaders, but to reach out to lawmakers from other parts of the state and, hopefully, to raise the stature and influence of Duncan and Southwest Oklahoma.

Some 250 chamber officials, business leaders and other supporters of various towns in the region are expected to take part in the reception. Deal, who annually gathers input from the community to put together a bullet point list of issues important to Duncan, said it's a chance to communicate and also collaborate. While he's witnessed spirited discussions in past years, they've always been respectful and two-way, and he said he's seen how they can make a difference.

"I've seen minds changed on supporting certain issues," he said.

Duncan's 2018 legislative agenda includes support for state laws and policies that would encourage economic development in Stephens County and the area.

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