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Oklahoma state Reps. Leslie Osborn, center, R-Mustang, Kevin Wallace, left, R-Wellston and Glen Mulready, right, R-Tulsa, talk on the House floor in Oklahoma City, Monday, May 22, 2017.
Sue Ogracki / AP

Five Things That Happened During Oklahoma’s 2017 Legislative Session

Oklahoma’s legislative session came to a close on Friday, as lawmakers passed a nearly $7 billion budget. Republicans, who hold a large majority in both the House and Senate, needed Democratic support to pass revenue-raising measures, but negotiations crumbled over the weekend. To fill a $878 million budget gap, lawmakers needed to pass several measures that could still be challenged in court.

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Somali refugees wait outside a UNHCR processing center at a refugee camp outside Dadaab, eastern Kenya, on Aug. 5, 2011. Climate change contributed to low rain levels in East Africa in 2011, making global warming one of the causes of Somalia's famine.
Jerome Delay / AP

 

Interactions between humans and the environment is a two-way street. Human actions change the environment, and changes to the environment affect human behavior.

David Lopez-Carr, a geographer a the University of California-Santa Barbara, calls it “human environment dynamics.” He studies how climate change impacts food security, crop production and human health, particularly infant mortality.

 

“Babies and infants are the hardest hit when there is when there are food shortages,” Lopez-Carr told KGOU’s World Views.

Oklahoma City University law students Sonya Chronister, Cameron Farnsworth and Marcos Sierra talk about the Oklahoma Innocence Project’s latest work while sitting in the J. William Conger Courtroom at the OCU School of Law.
Brent Fuchs / Journal Record

 

The Oklahoma Innocence Project’s caseload is growing after the non-profit scored a legal victory last year that exonerated two former inmates.

In May 2016, Malcolm Scott and De’Marchoe Carpenter left prison for the first time in 16 years after the Oklahoma Innocence Project cleared the two men. Both were wrongfully convicted in the 1994 murder of Karen Summers and sentenced to life plus 170 years.

National Weather Service

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin has declared a state of emergency in response to a night of heavy storms that damaged power lines and homes across the state.

The state of emergency will last for 30 days and allows state agencies to make purchases that will contribute to disaster preparedness and relief, according to a press release from the governor’s office.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The most practical alternative to earthquake-triggering oilfield disposal wells is for energy companies to reuse the wastewater instead of injecting it underground, leaders of a research group working on behalf of the state said Wednesday.

Avoiding Injection

Paige Willett / KGOU

At Massive Graphics in Norman, workers stamp t-shirt after t-shirt for the festival. Sitting on a nearby table are neat piles of freshly printed shirts for Norman Music Festival X with designs like a tambourine playing monkey and an acoustic guitar. The screen printing company is owned by Kent Johnson. He’s also the vice president of the volunteer board that organizes Norman Music Festival every year, and he’s been there since the beginning.  

Sue Ogrocki / AP Photo

A state senator under investigation for unreported campaign donations has resigned.

Oklahoma State Senator Kyle Loveless of District 45 in central Oklahoma submitted a letter of resignation on Thursday morning.

Oklahoma Attorney General's Office

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter announced the formation of a state task force to combat opioid addiction on Wednesday.  

The Oklahoma Commission on Opioid Abuse will consist of nine members, including lawmakers, law enforcement, a dentist, a pharmacist, a nurse and a doctor. It will consider policy changes to prevent, treat and intervene in opioid addiction.

Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater speaks to the Board of County Commissioners on Nov. 2.
Kate Carlton Greer / KGOU

The Oklahoma County district attorney has found no probable cause to charge a police officer responsible for the February shooting death of a man in Bethany.

Members of the Oklahoma Death Penalty Review Commission, including former Oklahoma governor Brad Henry, gave a press conference Tuesday.
Claire Donnelly / KGOU

A bipartisan group of Oklahomans is urging the state to keep its temporary ban on the death penalty.

 

U.S. Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., talks to supporters during the Republican watch party in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016.
J. Pat Carter / AP

The U.S. Senate investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election is moving steadily, despite reports to the contrary, said Oklahoma Senator James Lankford in an interview with NPR's Rachel Martin on Tuesday morning.

 

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