Politics and Government
8:03 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Ethics Commission Seeks Input Regarding Financial Disclosure Availability

Kathy Stocker, Chair, Oklahoma Ethics Commission
Credit Oklahoma Ethics Commission

The Ethics Commission will seek additional public comment regarding whether its Financial Disclosure Statements will be made available online and, if so, what information they will contain.

The report is required of state officers, certain state employees, and candidates running for office who file declarations of candidacy with the State Election Board.

Currently, the reports are available publicly in printed form only.

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Budget Shortfall Next Year
7:50 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Office Of Juvenile Affairs Needs Increase For FY16

Office of Juvenile Affairs Executive Director, T. Keith Wilson.
Credit Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs

The Office of Juvenile Affairs may need to consider shutting down some juvenile facilities next fiscal year if the Legislature does not increase its appropriations.

Board members were told last month the agency would need a “substantial increase in the budget for 2016” to keep certain facilities operational.

On Friday, the board discussed a potential budget for fiscal year 2016 that calls for an increase of $21.1 million in appropriations. No action was taken on the proposed budget but a myriad of needs for the agency were discussed. 

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Oklahoma Employment Security Commission
5:40 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

July Numbers Point To Slight Unemployment Increase

Credit Simon Cunningham / Flickr.com

The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission reports a slight increase in the unemployment rate in Oklahoma.

The commission said Monday that unemployment rose to 4.6 percent in July — up from 4.5 percent in June. The national unemployment rate for the month stood at 6.2 percent.

Four of the nine major industry sectors posted decreases in jobs in July and four saw an increase while the government sector was unchanged.

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Energy
5:04 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Oklahoma Wind Power Companies Run Into Headwinds

A wind-powered water pump and a wind-driven electricity turbine share a field near the town of Calumet in western Oklahoma.
Joe Wertz NPR

Originally published on Tue August 19, 2014 5:57 am

Oklahoma is the nation's fourth-largest generator of wind energy. But wind developers in the northeast corner of the state, where the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve lies, are up against stiff opposition from an unlikely pair of allies: environmentalists and oil interests.

Bob Hamilton, director of the Nature Conservancy's Tallgrass Prairie Preserve, has been fighting to block construction of a 68-turbine wind farm.

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Formerly First Female Chairman
4:37 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Jari Askins Named Interim Director Of Pardon And Parole Board

Credit Margo Wright / Wikimedia Commons

Gov. Mary Fallin says a former lieutenant governor she defeated in the 2010 election has been named interim executive director of the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board.

Fallin's office said the board appointed Jari Askins on Monday. The governor called Askins a "dedicated and universally respected" public servant.

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Oklahoma Voices
10:46 am
Mon August 18, 2014

Norman Residents Hear About Possibilities Of Banning Fracking At Public Forum

Terry Stowers, a Norman mineral owner attorney and Executive Director of the coalition of Oklahoma Surface and Mineral Owners listens with apparent consternation during a dispute with New York Attorney and activist David Slottje.
Joy Hampton The Norman Transcript

The Lowry Room at the Norman Public Library filled to capacity Monday night, and a mass of people packed into the hallways to listen to a forum on hydraulic fracturing that included an OU scientist, an assistant city attorney, and a lawyer from upstate New York who’s helped communities there ban fracking.

StateImpact’s Logan Layden moderated the event as each panelist made a presentation, and read questions from the audience.

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Immigration
9:05 am
Mon August 18, 2014

Oklahoma City 'Dreamers' Recognize Anniversary Of DACA

Immigration activists celebrate the second anniversary of the implementation of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Friday in Oklahoma City.
Ben Fenwick KGOU

Activists in Oklahoma City last week celebrated the second anniversary of the implementation of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals – a controversial program that allows undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children to remain temporarily.

At the gathering Friday afternoon at a bakery along SW 29th Street the group Dream Act Oklahoma cut a birthday cake and celebrated the 2012 implementation of DACA.

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Shots - Health News
8:43 am
Mon August 18, 2014

The Power Of The Peer Group In Preventing Campus Rape

Maria Fabrizio for NPR

Originally published on Wed August 20, 2014 8:34 am

Many forces can drive a male college student to commit sexual assault. But one of the most important may be the company he keeps.

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Oklahoma Tornado Project
7:00 am
Mon August 18, 2014

Students Return To New Schools After 2013 Moore Tornado

10-year-old Marissa Miley returns Tuesday, August 19, to Briarwood Elementary School
Kate Carlton Greer Oklahoma Tornado Project

This week marks 15 months since a deadly tornado swept through Moore, Oklahoma, leveling two schools and taking the lives of seven children inside Plaza Towers Elementary. It’s been a long journey, but the schools finally reopen Tuesday, and the kids are excited to be back.

10-year-old Marissa Miley was finishing up third grade at Moore’s Briarwood Elementary last year when an EF-5 tornado destroyed her school.

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Oklahoma News
6:48 am
Mon August 18, 2014

City Of Tulsa Gathering Research On Fair Housing

Downtown Tulsa.
Credit thefixer / Flickr Creative Commons

The city of Tulsa is conducting a study on barriers to housing choices in Oklahoma's second largest city.

The goal is to identify whether there are barriers or adverse policies in housing rentals and sales, lending, insurance and the public sector. Part of the study includes collecting the opinions and experiences of people who are involved in the housing industry, including housing consumers.

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