Former Oklahoma Geological Survey seismologist Austin Holland.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Washington Post reporter Lori Montgomery traveled central Oklahoma and filed a story about Oklahoma’s earthquake swarm, an examination that included interviews from concerned residents, politicians and Sandra Ladra, who was injured in the 5.7-magnitude November 2011 earthquake and 

Oklahoma City Police Car
Paul L. McCord Jr. / Flickr Creative Commons

A recently proposed bill would allow law enforcement to contract a third party to provide transportation of individuals requiring mental health services.

Current law requires sheriffs and peace officers to transport individuals to and from designated sites or facilities for examination, emergency detention, protective custody and inpatient services.

SB0252, by Sen. Ron Sharp, would be the first step in fixing the inefficient process, said Sharp in a press release.

NHSE / Flickr Creative Commons

In light of the heightened flu activity The Oklahoma City-County Health Department says it’s never too late to receive a flu vaccination.  In addition, OCCHD says the best way to protect yourself and others is prevention…hand washing and covering your cough. The OCCHS is also providing a Blue Cross Blue Shield Caring Van  to all local school districts for scheduled visits, as a way to provide parents information and access, according to Patrick McGough, Divisional Director/Clinical Services.

Facebook

Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt has issued a scam warning after concerns were raised that someone may be calling residents claiming to be with Pruitt's office.

Complaints involve a caller falsely telling residents that they'll be arrested if money is not wired to the AG's office for various reasons, such as debt.

Pruitt says consumers should try to verify the caller's identity as well as the company represented; not to provide personal or financial information unless the resident has initiated the call to a verified reputable person, business or government agency.

Crews at work on a Helmerich & Payne drilling rig in western Oklahoma.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Oil drilling rig maker and operator Helmerich & Payne Inc. has announced plans to lay off 2,000 employees.

The Tulsa World reports that in a conference call with analysts Thursday, CEO John Lindsay said that the layoffs are due to the decrease in crude oil prices which has led to reduced rig use.

Updated at 11:58 a.m.

Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney isn't running for president in 2016, he told supporters in a statement.

"After putting considerable thought into making another run for president, I've decided it is best to give other leaders in the Party the opportunity to become our next nominee," he said in the statement and in a conference call with supporters.

Joy Hofmeister speaks during an Oct. 19, 2014 debate in Norman.
Kate Carlton Greer / KGOU

The State Board of Education approved a revised fiscal year 2016 budget Thursday that reflects a reduction of nearly $75 million from the previously approved budget under the leadership of former State Superintendent Janet Barresi.

The new proposed budget includes a $5,000 teacher pay raise over a five year period as well as an addition of five instructional days to the school year. The proposal, branded as #OKHigh5, was brought forward by new State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister.

seismic readout
Great Beyond / Flickr

State Rep. Cory Williams (D-Stillwater) has filed legislation requiring Oklahoma insurers to offer earthquake coverage to their customers.

Under House Bill 1571, carriers would have to notify their residential customers that a typical homeowners policy does not cover loss from earthquakes, and that a separate earthquake policy could provide less protection than a standard homeowners policy.

The proposed Core to Shore tax increment financing district boundary.
The Journal Record

This week the Oklahoma City Council voted 8-1 to authorize Mayor Mick Cornett explore the idea of creating two new tax increment financing, or TIF, districts in downtown Oklahoma City.

These subsidies for redevelopment and community improvement projects embody the idea of “public-private partnerships” between cities and businesses.

Oklahoma City Councilman Ed Shadid cast the lone “no” vote.

Terry L. Cline, Oklahoma Commissioner of Health
ok.gov

The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Health and Human Services met Thursday for the last of its initial budget hearings.

All state agencies continue to request increases despite a forecast $300 million reduction in state revenue.

The Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth requested an additional $75,000 to hire one full-time employee to manage their new foster parent grievance and complaint system as part of the Post-adjudication Review Board.

Pages