Following Oklahoma's 2013 Tornadoes, Where Does Federal Aid Really Go?

Debris filled the streets in Moore, Okla. on May 20, 2013.
State Farm Flickr Creative Commons

After a string of deadly tornados hit Oklahoma in the spring of last year, President Obama signed a federal disaster declaration that paved the way for up to $257 million in aid.

One year later, about one half of that funding has been spent.  The Oklahoma Tornado Project teamed up with Oklahoma Watch to track where all the money went. 

Following huge disasters, there’s always a potential for things to go wrong. In New Orleans, former mayor Ray Nagin was recently sentenced to 10 years in prison for taking bribes from contractors rebuilding after Hurricane Katrina. And in New Jersey, there’s been criticism that some Sandy aid money has gone to less needy areas.

So we wanted to look into Oklahoma’s post-storm recovery. State Department of Emergency Management Director Albert Ashwood – who has worked closely with FEMA – says outright fraud is less common than it used to be. 

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The Two-Way
9:44 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Facebook Users Don't 'Like' This: Status Update Error Messages

Facebook

Originally published on Mon October 21, 2013 10:51 am

If you tried to post a status update on Facebook or "like" someone else's Monday morning, you probably got a message like this:

"There was a problem updating your status. Please try again later."

You are not alone. The Miami Herald reports:

"Facebook users are reporting trouble logging in and posting updates Monday morning.

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Chesapeake
7:56 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Reporter’s Notebook: Update On OKC’s Chesapeake Energy

Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The chief executive of Chesapeake Energy Inc. says he expects the company to grow in the future, despite the fact that it gave pink slips to 800 employees Oct. 8.

Journal-Record energy reporter Sarah Terry-Cobo provides an overview of developments and where the company is headed.

Terry-Cobo says the situation with Chesapeake is unique, and similar layoff should not be expected by other Oklahoma City energy companies.

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Politics and Government
7:32 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Ex-Oklahoma Lawmaker To Be Tried On Bribery Charge

Former State Rep. Randy Terrill (R-Moore)
Credit Oklahoma House of Representatives

A former Oklahoma lawmaker charged with bribery is scheduled to go to trial almost three years after the felony charge was filed by anOklahoma County prosecutor.

Jury selection for former Republican Rep. Randy Terrill of Moore is to begin Monday. Prosecutors say Terrill offered to set up former Democratic Sen. Debbe Leftwich ofOklahoma City in a state job in exchange for promising not to seek re-election so a Republican colleague of Terrill's could run for her open seat.

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StoryCorps
7:09 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Air The StoryCorps Theme, Cue The Tears

Radio documentarian Dave Isay stands next to one of two StoryCorps Airstream trailers outfitted with recording studios a few years after the project was launched. StoryCorps is celebrating its 10th anniversary.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 2:37 pm

NPR's Steve Inskeep has a confession to make. In order to remain composed as the host of Morning Edition, he sometimes has to turn the volume down in the studio when the StoryCorps segment airs on Fridays.

"I just wait for the clock to run down so I know when to talk at the end because otherwise I know I'm going to lose it if I listen to that story," Inskeep tells StoryCorps founder Dave Isay. "It's deeply moving."

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The Two-Way
4:50 pm
Sun October 20, 2013

Obama Administration Addresses Health Care Website Fumbles

A woman looks at the HealthCare.gov insurance exchange internet site.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 20, 2013 11:17 am

The Obama administration has started to confront the many technological problems that have hampered the roll out of the new health care law.

"I think that there's no one more frustrated than the president at the difficulty in the website," Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said on Meet the Press this morning.

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The Two-Way
12:29 pm
Sun October 20, 2013

Sox Vs. Cards: 5 Things To Know About The World Series

Jonny Gomes of the Boston Red Sox celebrates after defeating the Detroit Tigers in Game Six of the American League Championship Series at Fenway Park on Sunday.
Jared Wickerham Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 20, 2013 1:45 pm

The Boston Red Sox clinched the American League pennant last night during a 5-2 win over the Detroit Tigers in Game 6 of the American League Championship Series.

That means the World Series matchup is set: It'll be the Red Sox vs. the St. Louis Cardinals beginning Wednesday in Boston.

With that, here are five things you should know about the upcoming championship series:

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Manager's Desk
12:18 pm
Sun October 20, 2013

Thank You for the Successful Fall Membership Drive

Fireworks for a successful fall membership drive!
Credit Kevin Dooley

October 20, 2013

With enormous thanks to the listeners who became members of KGOU, this fall membership drive raised about $202,500 for the station's operations.  Over 1,200 members donated in the weeks before or during the drive and about 200 of them were new to membership.

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The Salt
8:09 am
Sun October 20, 2013

Unleashed On Halloween, Monster Cereals Haunt Hoarders

This Halloween season, the three big Monster Cereals will be joined by Frute Brute and Fruity Yummy Mummy, which haven't been on the market in decades.
Dan Pashman

Originally published on Mon October 21, 2013 2:11 pm

This Halloween season, the cereal monsters are on the loose. Count Chocula, Boo Berry and Franken Berry have consumers in their grasp — for a limited time only.

General Mills' line of "Monster Cereals" originally hit the market in the early '70s, but the company decided in 2010 they would only be available during the Halloween season.

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Politics
8:44 am
Sat October 19, 2013

'It Takes A Crisis': How '73 Embargo Fueled Change In U.S.

Drivers and a man pushing a lawnmower line up at gas station in San Jose, Calif., in March 1974.
AP

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 6:26 pm

Americans started thinking differently about U.S. dependence on imported oil 40 years ago this Sunday. Decades later, the U.S. is in the midst of a homegrown energy boom.

The oil embargo began in 1973. The United States had long taken cheap and plentiful oil for granted when Saudi Arabia shocked the country by suddenly cutting off all direct oil shipments in retaliation for U.S. support of Israel. Other Arab countries followed suit.

Prices soared. Gasoline lines stretched for blocks. Richard Nixon became the first of many U.S. presidents to call for energy independence.

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Indian Times
7:32 pm
Fri October 18, 2013

Star Wars As You Never Heard It Before...In Navajo

Credit SNMONH

Star Wars is one of those iconic movies that left its mark on the pop culture…Native Americans are often left out of the popular zeitgeist, so to encourage more interest in native languages the Navajo Nation took this movie and made it their own. And now its coming to a theater near you.

The movie will have its Oklahoma debut at the Sam Noble Museum in Norman on October 27 at 7pm.

Daniel Swan, Curator of Ethnology at the Sam Noble Museum of Natural History, said the movie is entirely dubbed in Navajo.

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