Tax Credits
1:37 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Oklahoma Senate Panel Passes Bill For $5 Million In Film Rebates

Credit twoshortplanks / Flickr Creative Commons

A $5 million annual rebate program that has been used to attract producers of films like last year's August: Osage County to Oklahoma would continue for another ten years under a bill that has passed a Senate committee.

The Senate Finance Committee voted 7-2 for the bill on Tuesday. It now heads to the full Senate, where it is expected to pass.

But lawmakers who oppose the bill say the program is a wasteful use of tax dollars.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
12:59 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Oklahoma AG And Energy Group Sue U.S. Government Over Endangered Species Settlements

The Lesser Prairie Chicken
Credit USDAgov / Flickr Creative Commons

Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt and the Domestic Energy Producers Alliance on Monday filed a lawsuit against the federal government, accusing the Department of the Interior and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service of “colluding” with environmental groups to bypass public rule-making procedures to enact endangered species regulations.

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Same-Sex Marriage
11:51 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Brief: Oklahoma Gay Marriage Ban Demeans Children

Credit Cavan Images / Flickr Creative Commons

Opponents of Oklahoma's gay marriage ban say it demeans same-sex couples and their children by signaling that their relationships are secondary to traditional families.

The argument came in a 102-page document filed Monday on behalf of Mary Bishop and Sharon Baldwin in the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver.

Bishop and Baldwin are suing to be allowed to marry in Oklahoma.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
10:32 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Federal Government Shutdown Cut Visitation At Oklahoma Park Sites By Half

Dick Duhn, owner of Arbuckle RV Resort, said business was down more than 50 percent during the government shutdown.
Credit Logan Layden / StateImpact Oklahoma

The U.S. government shutdown in October 2013 was the culmination of a national political fight over federal budgeting, but its effects were felt far from Washington, D.C., including at two federal park sites in Oklahoma.

Sulphur, Okla. relies heavily on the tourism revenue it gets as a result of being attached to the Chickasaw National Wildlife Refuge, which was shutdown for the first half of October along with the rest of the country’s national parks and wildlife refuges.

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Native American
9:01 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Denver Museum Consulting With Native American Tribes Over Sand Creek Massacre Exhibit

The Sand Creek Massacre NHS continues to consult with a number of partners concerning the natural and cultural resources at the site. Here, park rangers meet with area landowners, tribal members, the Natural Resource Conservation Service, the Colorado State Forest Service, and others
Credit National Park Service

Colorado's state museum has agreed to consult with Native American tribes after the museum closed an exhibit on the Sand Creek Indian massacre over complaints from descendants of the slaughter's survivors that they weren't consulted about the display.

The consultations, which will begin Tuesday, will include Colorado officials, History Colorado museum officials, the Northern Cheyenne Tribe of Montana, the Northern Arapaho Tribe of Wyoming, and the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma.

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Tornado
8:31 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Moore Approves Tornado Resistant Building Codes

New homes in Moore, Okla. should be able to withstand winds up to 135 miles per hour if built to new building codes passed Monday.
Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The City of Moore is adopting stricter building codes intended to reduce the damage from high winds. The new regulations should strengthen homes against tornado damage.

The codes approved by the Moore City Council Monday would require hurricane straps that connect the roof of a home to the wall studs. The rules also add anchors that tie the frame to the foundation, continuous plywood bracing and garage doors built to withstand high winds.

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The Two-Way
6:12 am
Tue March 18, 2014

West Is Ruled 'By The Gun,' Putin Says As He Annexes Crimea

Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Mikhail Klimentyev/RIA Novosti/Kremlin pool EPA/Landov

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 5:21 pm

  • On 'Morning Edition': Ellen Barry, Moscow correspondent for 'The New York Times,' talks with NPR's Renee Montagne
We updated this post as Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke and other leaders reacted.

Wasting no time and showing no sign that he's concerned about Western objections or economic sanctions, Russian President Vladimir Putin annexed Crimea on Tuesday.

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Parallels
4:17 am
Tue March 18, 2014

After 300 Years Of Marriage, Scotland Contemplates U.K. Divorce

Pro-independence campaigners attend a rally In Edinburgh, Scotland, in September.
Jeff J Mitchell Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 9:22 am

Scotland has been part of the United Kingdom for more than 300 years. This fall, that could change. In mid-September, a referendum on independence will determine whether Scotland breaks off from England, Northern Ireland and Wales to become a sovereign nation.

Scotland's largest city, Glasgow, is ground zero in this debate. The East End of this city is poor and run down, with some of the worst health figures in Europe. Men here are expected to live into only their mid-50s, some 30 years less than in wealthy areas.

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May 2013 Tornados
5:12 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Feds Give Additional $109 Million In Aid To Oklahoma

The aftermath of the May 2013 tornado in Moore, Okla.
Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan has announced an additional $109 million in disaster aid for Moore and the state of Oklahoma for recovery efforts from last year's tornadoes and other disasters.

Moore will receive nearly $26 million and the state will receive $83 million from the federal agency's community development block grant program.

Monday's announcement is in addition to nearly $28 million in HUD funds announced last August.

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Education Standards
4:10 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Opponents Of Common Core Rally At Oklahoma State Capitol

Credit Terrapin Flyer / Flickr Creative Commons

More than 200 opponents of a set of education standards in math and English known as Common Core are rallying at the Capitol and urging the Senate to pass a bill to repeal the standards.

Wearing green shirts that read "Common Core is not OK," the group that included parents, teachers and students roamed the Senate halls and lobbied for the bill, which passed the House last week.

The Senate so far has thwarted attempts to delay or repeal the standards, which were adopted in Oklahoma in 2010 and are supported by Republican Gov. Mary Fallin and Superintendent Janet Barresi.

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