By James Beaty
New District 2 U.S Rep. Markwayne Mullin, R-Westville, is going to maintain a district office in McAlester and, as a new congressman, he’s already toured the McAlester Army Ammunition Plant.
Mullin became a congressman on Jan. 3, along with other newly-elected House members.
During a recent town hall meeting at the McAlester Public Library prior to his being sworn into office, Mullin said he wasn’t sure at the time if he would continue to maintain a District 2 field office in McAlester.
That’s now been resolved.
Mullin’s office is at a different location than Boren’s, with Boren’s office most recently located along Carl Albert Parkway.
Mullin’s new office is 101 Airport Road, inside the former Federal Aviation Administration Automated Flight Service building near McAlester Regional Airport.
“I am thrilled to be opening an official Congressional office in McAlester,” Mullin said.
Mullin toured McAAP during a trip to McAlester last week and issued a statement regarding the tour.
"McAlester Army Ammunition Plant is a tremendous asset to the 2nd District and easily one of the largest employers in southeastern Oklahoma," Mullin said.
"I was very impressed by the tour I received at this facility. For 70 years this plant has been doing incredibly important work for our armed forces while providing an economic engine for the region and I'm humbled with the opportunity to represent the facility and its hardworking staff in Congress.
"The hospitality I was shown during my visit was second to none and I can honestly say I learned a lot during my visit. During my time in Congress, I hope to be of service to the MCAAP and the people who work here."
Following the tour, Mullin met with several members of the McAlester Defense Support Association, a group formed to support the defense industry in McAlester.
They included Mark Jordan, MDSA chairman; vice chairman Gene Walker and MDSA Executive Committee member Brad Rutledge.
Meanwhile, Mullin’s Communications Director Tim Ross said two members of Boren’s staff have already made the transition to the new Congressman’s office.
Jason Self, who handled veterans’ affairs for Boren, is coming to Mullin’s McAlester office in the same capacity, according to Ross.
“Betty Ford is also staying on from Congressman Boren’s office,” Ross said, and will be continuing her role as a field representative.
Ford said last week that all the needed connections were not yet made at Mullin’s McAlester office.
“We are working to get the phones and the Internet,” she said.
Although the new office is already open when someone’s there to man it, the exact hours when a Mullin representative will be in the office haven’t been set. Since Ford is a field representative, she won’t always be in the office, but she said Self will be in it on a more regular basis.
“We were fortunate to find space that’s available,” Ross said.
The city of McAlester is donating the space for Mullin’s McAlester office, with the Congressman paying the utilities, said McAlester City Manager Pete Stasiak.
“We had a request and the council evaluated the request and decided it was good to have his office in McAlester in the best interests of the community,” Stasiak said.
Mullin’s McAlester office is among five offices the new Congressman will be operating.
“We thank the city for helping us find the space and their warm welcome,” Mullin said. “Together with our offices in Muskogee, Claremore, Durant and Washington D.C., the McAlester office will provide the best possible service to the people of the 2nd District.”
“We look forward to a great relationship with the residents of McAlester and are truly looking forward to the opportunity to help eastern Oklahoma.”
Contact James Beaty at email@example.com.
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