The Two-Way
7:52 am
Fri March 6, 2015

Nearly 300K New Jobs In February; Unemployment Dips To 5.5 Percent

Job applicant Rafael Ferrer, 49, (left) greets a representative of the Hilton Bentley Miami Beach hotel during a job fair at the Hospitality Institute in January.
Lynne Sladky AP

Originally published on Fri March 6, 2015 8:41 am

The U.S. economy added 295,000 jobs last month, according to the Labor Department's monthly survey, and the unemployment rate dropped to 5.5 percent. The latest strong data beat expectations and follow a robust jump the previous month — a sign that the nation's economy is finally picking up steam.

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Business Intelligence Report
6:45 am
Fri March 6, 2015

Future Of MAPS 3 Convention Center Uncertain After Oklahoma City Drops Land Bid

The previous site plan for the downtown Oklahoma City convention center.
Courtesy rendering The Journal Record

Tuesday afternoon Oklahoma City leaders announced they would start looking for a new site for the convention center that's part of the Metropolitan Area Projects, or MAPS 3, proposal voters approved in 2009.

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Oklahoma News
5:27 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Col. Douglas Stall To Take Over At Camp Gruber

Credit Oklahoma National Guard / Flickr Creative Commons

The Oklahoma National Guard has announced a change of command ceremony for its largest training installation.

The ceremony will be Saturday at Camp Gruber Training Center about one mile north of Braggs in eastern Oklahoma.

Col. Douglas Stall will be installed as commander, taking over for Col. Curtis Arnold.

Stall previously served as commander at Camp Gruber from January 2011 until January 2014. He most recently served as the Deputy Commanding Officer of the 45th Infantry Brigade.

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4:48 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Why Some Parents Are Sitting Kids Out Of Tests

GIRLRAY Flikr Creative Commons

Originally published on Fri March 6, 2015 7:02 am

Meet Jenni Hofschulte, the 35-year-old mom who's one of the parents leading the charge against testing in Milwaukee.

"I have two children in Milwaukee Public Schools," Hofschulte says over coffee at a cafe near her home. "The oldest one is in eighth grade." She's interrupted by her fidgety 4-year-old son, Lachlan.

Hofschulte quiets him down, furrows her brow and begins again.

Hofschulte says that when she found out her son would have to take a diagnostic test next year that's required of all Wisconsin kindergartners, all kinds of red flags went up.

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State Capitol
3:53 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Capitol Building Interior Renovations To Take Five Years

Credit Meghan Blessing / KGOU

The construction company selected to overhaul the Oklahoma Capitol's interior estimates work will start in about one year and take up to five years to complete based on a phased plan that would focus one or two floors at a time.

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The Two-Way
3:38 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Thousands Reportedly Flee Battle In Tikrit

A Shiite fighter sits on a military vehicle in the town of Hamrin in Salahuddin province on Thursday.

Originally published on Thu March 5, 2015 3:49 pm

Thousands of refugees have fled fighting in Tikrit, according to the U.N., as Iraqi forces backed by Shiite militias and Kurdish peshmerga battle to expel extremists from the self-declared Islamic State from the city.

Meanwhile, Reuters reports that ISIS militants have set fire to oil wells in Iraq's north in an effort to slow government forces.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
2:42 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

New Severance Tax On Limestone Miners Passes Oklahoma House

An active aggregate mining operation near Mill Creek, Okla.
Logan Layden StateImpact Oklahoma

South-central Oklahoma — where the sensitive Arbuckle-Simpson Aquifer provides water for thousands of Oklahomans — is home to some of the highest quality limestone in the country, and the ground holds vast supplies of the silica sand used by the oil and gas industry in the hydraulic fracturing process.

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Oklahoma News
1:30 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Former OKC Mayor James Norick Dies At 95

Former OKC Mayor James S. Norick

Former Oklahoma City Mayor James Norick has died.

Norick's son, former Oklahoma City Mayor Ron Norick, said Thursday that his father died Wednesday of natural causes. Ron Norick said funeral services are set for Monday, but details are not yet complete.

James Norick was elected Oklahoma City mayor twice, serving from 1959-63 and again from 1967-71.

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Oklahoma News
12:47 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Former Sooner Broyles And State Treasurer Miller Team Up To Teach Financial Skills

Credit Matthew Carney / Flickr Creative Commons

A former University of Oklahoma football star is using a unique way to spread the word to young people on how to be responsible with their money.

The Oklahoman reports that former Sooner and current Detroit Lions wide receiver Ryan Broyles is working with Oklahoma Treasurer Ken Miller on a statewide initiative to improve the money management skills of high school and middle school students by distributing a video game called "Financial Football."

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World Views
10:17 am
Thu March 5, 2015

Revolutionary Lessons: Parallels Between America’s Independence And The Arab Spring

John Trumbull's famous painting of the Founders presenting the Declaration of Independence to the Second Continental Congress.
Library of Congress

Beginning in 2010, a wave of revolutions swept the Middle East, removing rulers and establishing new regimes. Although the Arab Spring took place more than two centuries after the American Revolution, they occurred in similar social and political contexts.

“Before [the Arab Spring] there was an Atlantic Spring that began actually in 1776,” says Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Gordon Wood.

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