KGOU
Bob Kerr on his ranch near Carnegie, Okla., which is flanked by turbines from the Blue Canyon Wind Farm.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Wind Industry Says Rolling Back Last Major Incentive Will Undermine Investments In Oklahoma

One major tax incentive for wind energy remains on the books in Oklahoma. And the Legislature is poised to end it — more than three years early. The politics of renewable energy have changed as state revenues have failed, but some wind producers say lawmakers are reneging on a deal that sends a bad message to any industry considering investing in Oklahoma. Oklahoma’s wind industry has grown year after year. With 3,400 turbines spread across 41 wind farm projects, the state ranks No. 3 in the...

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Maya Media

 

An immigration raid at a slaughterhouse and meat-processing plant in Postville, Iowa in 2008 launched a Guatemalan-American filmmaker’s career in an entirely new direction.

When Luis Argueta heard about the raid in Postville, he went to investigate.

“What I thought would be a four day trip has turned into eight years,” Argueta told KGOU’s World Views.

His experience in Postville transformed during that time into three documentaries that tell the story of the small farm town and the immigrants that call it home.

Jacob McCleland / KGOU

 

 

The Oklahoma legislature faces an approximately $880 million budget shortfall, and proposals to increase revenue have not gained traction. Meanwhile, the House passed a bill this week that would incrementally increase teacher pay.

A helicopter is shown on a landing pad at OU Medical Center, 700 NE 13th St. in Oklahoma City.
Brent Fuchs / Journal Record

 

Oklahoma City’s two largest hospital systems chose not go ahead with proposed merger earlier this week. The University of Oklahoma Medical Services and SSM Health, the parent company that operates St. Anthony’s Hospital, announced on Monday that their proposed merger had fallen through.

Oklahoma state capitol
Jacob McCleland / KGOU

The Oklahoma state House of Representatives furthered a bill Thursday that would roll back part of a state question that was approved by voters in November.

Oklahomans voted in favor of State Questions 780 and 781 last year, which reduced simple drug possession from a felony crime to a misdemeanor.

In debate on the House floor, Republican Representative Tim Downing, R-Purcell, said House Bill 1482 would give district attorneys the discretion to enhance simple drug possession to a felony if it occurs within 1,000 feet of a school

Edmond resident Jonathon Stranger in his 2013 Nissan Leaf, an all-electric car.
Logan Layden / StateImpact Oklahoma

A bill passed by the state House of Representatives Wednesday would impose an annual fee on owners of plug-in hybrid and all-electric vehicles in Oklahoma, and that’s leaving some electric car owners feeling singled out.

A gray 2013 Nissan Leaf sits in Edmond resident Jonathon Stranger’s driveway.

“There’s no gas. There’s no motor oil,” Stranger says. “It’s the future.”

Oklahoma state Sen. A.J. Griffin speaks at a committee meeting at the Oklahoma state Capitol.
Brent Fuchs / Journal Record

The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation will be required to investigate all deaths in Oklahoma’s prisons and jails under a bill that passed through the state senate on Monday.

State Sen. A.J. Griffin, R-Guthrie, who authored Senate Bill 250, said she wants to understand why the state is losing people who are incarcerated.

“Anytime we have a vulnerable population, I think it’s important for us to take a systemic look,” she said.

Woodward Department of Civil Defense and Homeland Security

Wildfires spread across larges swaths of northwestern Oklahoma Monday, leading to evacuation warnings for several towns.

Evacuation orders were issued for the communities of Laverne, Buffalo and Fort Supply in Woodward and Payne Counties. The evacuation order in Fort Supply only applied to community members and not to the William S. Key Correctional Center, according to Matt Lehenbaur, the emergency management director for the city of Woodward.

Oklahoma Watch

State lawmakers are officially at the one-quarter point of this year’s legislative session after wrapping up four weeks’ worth of work.

So far only one bill – the Real ID compliance act – has made it through the Legislature and been signed into law by Gov. Mary Fallin. And there remains plenty to do to find a solution to the state’s $878 million budget gap and tackle the hundreds of bills that remain at alive this point.

President Trump salutes a uniformed serviceman
Getty Images

President Trump has signed a revised executive order, once again barring travel to the United States from six majority-Muslim countries and suspending the U.S. refugee program. It's similar to the president's January order that was blocked by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. But this latest order leaves Iraq off the list of barred countries. The White House cites more cooperation with the Iraqi government in vetting people who apply for U.S. visas. The latest order also specifically states that it does not apply to legal permanent U.S. residents or current visa holders.

Storme Jones / KGOU

 

Oklahomans rallied at the State Capitol Saturday as part of a nationwide effort called March 4 Trump.

 

State Sen. Ervin Yen, R-Oklahoma City, spoke at the event and said Trump hasn’t had a chance to begin governing yet.

 

“Donald Trump is my president. Let’s give him a chance. Let’s stop bashing him,” Yen said. “The administration that he has put together, I think there are some really sharp people in there. Let’s see what happens”

 

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