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Oklahoma News
9:48 am
Thu June 5, 2014

Prisons Board To Discuss Oklahoma Execution Probe

The Oklahoma Board of Corrections at an April 25, 2013 meeting.
Credit Oklahoma Department of Corrections

The Oklahoma Board of Corrections is expected to meet behind closed doors to discuss an ongoing investigation into the botched execution of a death row inmate.

The board is to meet at 1 p.m. Thursday at the Mack Alford Correctional Center in Stringtown.

An agenda item says the board will meet in executive session to discuss the investigation and "possible litigation" regarding the April 29 execution of Clayton Lockett.

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State Capitol
9:01 am
Thu June 5, 2014

Oklahoma House Members Want To Explore State Revenue

Credit Nicholas Henderson / Flickr Creative Commons

Two House members have requested interim studies that would examine Oklahoma’s revenue streams. 

The requests come after Gov. Mary Fallin and her top budget advisor, Secretary of Finance, Administration and Information Services Preston Doerflinger, who serves as the governor’s top budget advisor, began stressing in December the impact allocation of state revenues to specific purposes has on General Revenue Fund collections.

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Oklahoma Tornado Project
7:42 am
Thu June 5, 2014

Oklahoma School Shelter Advocates Launch New, Slightly Different Petition

Civil rights icon the Rev. Jesse Jackson told parents and storm shelter supporters Wednesday protecting students from destructive tornados is "a moral obligation."
Kate Carlton Greer The Oklahoma Tornado Project

For the past nine months, school shelter supporters have fought to get a $500 million dollar bond issue to fund safe room construction on a statewide ballot. Attorney General Scott Pruitt revised the original proposal, adding what Take Shelter Oklahoma called “biased” and “unfair” language.

But the advocacy group announced a new version Wednesday.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
6:54 pm
Wed June 4, 2014

Norman Narrows Its Options For How To Have Enough Water in 2060

A water tower in Norman, Okla.
Credit Melissa Megginson / Flickr Creative Commons

At a public meeting on Tuesday, residents in Norman — where the water system is stressed due to population growth and age, and drought has taken a toll on already troubled Lake Thunderbird — heard about the city’s two options for water sustainability through 2060.

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no cashing in unused leave for state workers
6:13 pm
Wed June 4, 2014

Governor Fallin Vetoes Five Bills

Credit Serge Melki / Flickr.com

Governor Mary Fallin has vetoed five bills, including one that would have allowed state workers to cash in their unused leave.

Fallin delivered the vetoes late Wednesday. She signed two other measures into law.

In her veto message, Fallin said annual leave encourages a healthy work-life balance and that the bill "transforms leave time into a commodity."

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Bernice swimming area closed
4:14 pm
Wed June 4, 2014

High Levels Of Bacteria Found At Grand Lake State Park

Credit Kelly / Flickr.com

Officials say the swimming area at Grand Lake State Park in northeastern Oklahoma will remain closed through at least Friday after an unsafe level of E.coli was detected in the water.

Grand River Dam Authority spokesman Justin Alberty says more tests of the Bernice swimming area showed elevated levels of the bacteria. Alberty tells Tulsa television station KJRH that more water samples will be taken Friday.

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Environment
1:28 pm
Wed June 4, 2014

Northeast Oklahoma Tribe Signs More Agreements For Waste Site Cleanup

A sinkhole near the Tar Creek/Picher Superfund site in Northeast Oklahoma.
Janice Waltzer Flickr Creative Commons

The Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma has signed an agreement with the state to clean up contaminated waste leftover from decades of mining.

The tribe announced Wednesday that it has signed the agreement with the State of Oklahoma and the Environmental Protection Agency to perform additional remediation within the Tar Creek Superfund site. The tribe earlier this year became the first in the nation to successfully clean up a federal hazardous waste site.

Under the agreement, the tribe will remove approximately 72,000 tons of contaminated material and haul it to a nearby repository.

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Oklahoma News
12:10 pm
Wed June 4, 2014

Study: Oklahoma Ranks 47th for Senior Health

Credit Lisa Edmonds / Flickr Creative Commons

Oklahoma ranks ahead of only Mississippi, Louisiana and Kentucky in senior health for 2014.

United Health Foundation found the state’s seniors have a high level of inactivity and receive a low percentage of recommended hospital care.

Jan Figart with the Community Service Council in Tulsa said local health agencies have good plans to improve seniors’ health, "but there's no new monies set aside for this in order to make the improvements that would be necessary to really have a meaningful population effect."

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Native American
11:39 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Deadline Set For Backers Of Unfinished Oklahoma Indian Museum

American Indian Cultural Center and Museum

Private donors have given backers of the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum until the end of the month to come up with a plan to keep the project alive.

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Oklahoma Watch
10:27 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Oklahoma City Teachers Averaged 11 Missed Days of Work

Oklahoma Watch is a nonprofit organization that produces in-depth and investigative journalism on important public-policy issues facing the state. More Oklahoma Watch content can be found at www.oklahomawatch.org

Oklahoma City Public Schools teachers missed an average of 11 days of class in 2012-2013, matching the national average, according to a national report on teacher absenteeism released Tuesday.

The National Council on Teacher Quality looked at teacher absenteeism rates in the largest district in each of the 40 biggest metropolitan areas. The organization advocates for reforms that would improve teacher quality.

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