oil pump jack
Paul Lowry / Flickr

Energy Downturn Means More Business Investment, Competition Coming For H&8th?

There’s an interesting side effect of the downturn in energy prices that started late last year – a strong trend in business sales. After being laid off from the oil and gas sector, many former employees look to something completely different. In a lot of cases they have savings, plus a big severance package, and The Journal Record’s managing editor Adam Brooks says a business can be a good investment, and it’s a good time to buy. “In June, there were 23 percent more sales listing for...
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Workers harvesting wheat on a farm near Altus, Okla., in June 2015.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The decades-old embargo on trade with communist Cuba cuts U.S. goods off from what would be one of their nearest international destinations. That could be changing now that the two countries are restoring diplomatic relations.

police sirens
Highway Patrol Images / Flickr

In Oklahoma, some people in charge of enforcing the law seem to be skirting it. State audits have found people in district attorney offices have used seized money and property to live rent-free and pay off student loans.

When state Sen. Kyle Loveless first heard about the audits, he'd already been thinking about amending the civil asset forfeiture laws — mainly because the state doesn't always follow the law.

potholes
Michael Gil / Flickr

U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) delivered the Weekly Republican Address Saturday, where he spoke about a long-term transportation bill currently under consideration in the chamber.

Inhofe said the currently federal highway system had a 50-year design life when it was implemented more than 60 years ago.

Randy Brogdon / Facebook

Recently released videos that show a Planned Parenthood official discussing the distribution of fetal body parts are being used by anti-abortion advocates in Oklahoma to seek political contributions and bolster support for legislation to further restrict abortion.

Oklahoma Republican Party Chairman Randy Brogdon sent an email on Thursday soliciting donations to "help us end abortion in Oklahoma." He also urged the governor to call a special session to outlaw abortion altogether and shut down Planned Parenthood, which operates four health clinics in the state.

StickWare / Flickr

Registered independents in Oklahoma will now be able to vote in Democratic primaries.

The vote by the Oklahoma Democratic Party to allow the move came during the reconvening of its State Convention in Oklahoma City on Saturday.

With the approval, independents will be able to vote in elections as soon as September.

New Party Chairman Mark Hammons supports the move and said he believes it would help Democratic candidates appeal to more voters. Some longtime party activists contend it could water down the party's message.

Updated at 1:10 p.m. ET

The Defense Department, reacting to armed citizens appearing in front of military recruiting offices around the country since last week's fatal shootings of five U.S. servicemen in Chattanooga, Tenn., has asked that "individuals not stand guard" on federal property.

Should the president of the Navajo Nation be required to speak fluent Navajo?

The Navajo Nation held a referendum on that question this week, and the majority voted no.

The vote was victory for supporters of a Navajo presidential candidate who was disqualified last fall because he didn't speak the language fluently. The next Navajo Nation election is in 2018.

Amy Mayer / Harvest Public Media

On Thursday, the U.S. House passed a bill that would prevent states from passing and enacting laws that require mandatory labels on genetically modified food. Here’s what you should know about it:

The bill would change labels for GMO foods  The bill:

Robert Bever
Tulsa County Jail

Updated July 26, 2015

Few details are known about the two brothers who killed their parents and three siblings in their Broken Arrow, Oklahoma home this past week.

The Tulsa World reports that neighbors describe them as a family that keeps to themselves, and the children were rarely seen outside the house.

A public latrine in a slum near Bangalore, India.
SuSanA Secretariat / Flickr

As of last year, India accounted for around 60 percent of the 2.5 billion people globally without access to a toilet, creating a serious sanitation crisis throughout India.

“What we’re talking about is the spread of disease, but we’re also talking about loss of health. We’re talking about loss of labor time,” said geographer Kathleen O’Reilly.

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