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In this July 2, 2017 photo, Veracruz state police patrol along the waterfront boulevard in Coatzacoalcos, Mexico.
Rebecca Blackwell / AP

The recent surge of violence in Mexico is due to greater competition for territory between drug cartels, according to a University of Oklahoma political scientist.

Charles Kenney told KGOU’s World Views the Mexican government’s war on drug cartels weakened some drug cartels, but others have stepped up to fill the void,  creating violence.

Lori Taylor reads the second letter she received from the state Department of Human Services informing her that her Medicaid waiver program will be funded temporarily.
Jackie Fortier / StateImpact Oklahoma

After her divorce, Lori Taylor wanted a home all her own. She moved back to Oklahoma to be near her aging parents, but she had a problem. For years her personal caregiver had been her now ex-husband.

“I have cerebral palsy and that’s brain damage that I incurred at birth, and it affects my motor skills. I’m confined to an electric wheelchair. I can stand but I can’t walk, I have very limited use of my arms,” Taylor says, sitting in the living room of her Norman apartment.

Nomin Ujiyediin / KGOU

In anticipation of a Norman City Council vote to rename a street named after a deceased Ku Klux Klan member, a city councilwoman says she’ll cover the costs of the renaming herself.

Ward 6 Councilwoman Breea Clark is planning to start a GoFundMe to pay for administrative fees associated with renaming DeBarr Avenue, as well as new street signs. She also hopes to pay for other costs, like updating residents’ driver’s licenses, legal documents and checkbooks, if she raises enough funds.

silhouette of Donald Trump with speech balloons
Chelsea Beck / NPR

After passing their respective tax overhaul bills, the U.S. House and Senate have reportedly reconciled the differences in their legislation. President Trump made a renewed pitch to the American people about the importance of overhauling the tax code.

President Trump's remarks have been annotated with context and analysis from journalists across NPR.

Nancy Parsons, CEO and president of CDR Assessment Group Inc., speaks at the 2020 Woman on Boards conference at Oklahoma City University’s Meinders School of Business.
Brent Fuchs / Journal Record

Women comprise at least 20 percent of board members at only four publicly-traded corporations in Oklahoma. Those companies are Devon Energy Corp., OGE Energy Corp., Magellan Midstream Partners and Sonic Corp.

Across the country, universities are being criticized over issues of money: from how they spend their endowments, to how they raise tuition, to how they award financial aid.
Michael Schiller / Reveal

It’s no secret that college is getting more expensive – or that America’s student debt has erupted into a full-on crisis. But it’s not just loans that are putting pressure on Americans seeking an education. As this week’s episode explains, students face a variety of obstacles, from rising tuition rates to hard-line immigration laws.

Oklahoma Watch

The cash crisis at the Oklahoma State Department of Health, which was years in the making, raises questions about which agencies and state officials could have caught the agency’s reported financial mismanagement.

At first glance, state government appears to have the powers and expertise to detect  financial irregularities occurring at the health department from 2011 to 2017.

Handout Via AP

Editor's Note - This post was updated at 5:45 PM.

 

District Attorney David Prater announced Friday that Sgt. Christopher Barnes of the Oklahoma City Police Department will not be charged in the Sept. 19 fatal shooting of Magdiel Sanchez.

Alisa Ganieva
Storme Jones / KGOU

Award-winning novelist Alisa Ganieva’s books describe the complexities of her home, the Russian republic of Dagestan.

An English translation of her second book, Bride and Groom, will be released in January 2018. It’s a fictional depiction of marriage in her home.

Ganieva spoke to KGOU’s World Views when she was in Norman for the annual Neustadt Festival of International Literature and Culture. She says her novel begins when the groom’s family book a large banquet for his wedding. However, he does not yet have a bride.

The Santa Fe Station was built in 1934. It served passenger trains until 1979, and then again from 1999 to the present.
Nomin Ujiyediin / KGOU

Kaye Burlison remembers what the Santa Fe train station looked like in her youth: rusted metal canopies that stained the building’s limestone exterior, and windows fogged up from the uneven temperature control inside.  

“It was rust-colored instead of cream, so it was definitely in disrepair, ” Burlison said.

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin appears following a news conference in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017.
Sue Ogracki / AP

Oklahoma legislators won’t have time to go last-minute Christmas shopping--Gov. Mary Fallin will call legislators back to the state capitol for a second special session that will begin on Dec.18.

Gulfport Energy Corp. offices at 3001 Quail Springs Pkwy. in Oklahoma City.
Brent Fuchs / Journal Record

One Oklahoma City-based driller’s credit line was recently increased, which could be a sign the business is doing well.

Laura Knoll, KGOU

I’m Dick Pryor, general manager of KGOU Radio, and this is the Manager’s Minute.

We have exciting news to share this week.  

KGOU is now broadcasting from a transmitter near Clinton to listeners across a large part of western Oklahoma.

On December 1, Cameron University transferred the license for the transmitter to the University of Oklahoma and KGOU.

The addition of the Clinton transmitter increases the reach of KGOU’s broadcast signal to 32 counties.

Dustyn Rappe / Oklahoma Watch

A controversial practice of shutting children alone in small closet-like rooms to control their behavior has led Oklahoma parents to withdraw their children from school, seek police intervention and take legal action.

Gabriel Hongsdusit / Reveal

Across the country, criminals are arming themselves in unexpected ways. In Florida, they’re stealing guns from unlocked cars and gun stores. In other places, they’re getting them from the police themselves, as cash-strapped departments sell their used weapons to buy new ones. On this episode of Reveal, we learn where criminals get their guns and what cars can teach us about gun safety.

Inside A Judge’s Rehab: Unpaid Work At A Local Coca-Cola Plant

Dec 4, 2017
While at SOAR in Ada, Okla., defendants must work full time for free at a local Coca-Cola bottling plant and other companies, under threat of prison if they don’t comply.
Shane Bevel / Reveal

Retired Oklahoma Judge Thomas Landrith is hailed as a hero of criminal justice reform.

He started the first rural drug court in the nation and has reaped awards for sending defendants to treatment rather than prison. Most judges in the state model their drug courts after his.

File / AP Photo

 

 

The Oklahoma Department of Corrections is requesting a one billion-dollar increase in funding. DOC officials say the funding is long overdue.

The $1.53 billion budget includes plans to increase staff pay, build two new medium security prisons and expand rehabilitation programs aimed at reducing recidivism rates.

DOC Spokesman Matt Elliott told KGOU, some state prisons are in need of things like locks and sewage system repairs.

Oklahoma Watch

The state’s multicounty grand jury is looking into allegations of financial mismanagement at the Oklahoma State Department of Health as top officers continue to resign or get forced out in the wake of the agency’s sudden cash crunch.

Emily Wendler / StateImpact Oklahoma

Education leaders in Oklahoma say Gov. Mary Fallin’s executive order on school consolidation oversimplified a very complicated issue.

The November 21 order directs school districts that don’t spend at least 60 percent of their budget on instruction to consolidate administrative staff with other districts. A strict interpretation of this rule would force most Oklahoma school districts to cut an administrator, or a support staff person, and then find a way to split that cost with a neighboring district.

Former Mexican Ambassador to the U.S., Arturo Sarukhan Casamitjana, pauses before answering question during his interview with the Associated Press in Washington, Monday, Jan. 26, 2009.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

The United States and Mexico have a daily economic impact on each other, but citizens of both countries often don’t grasp the importance of the U.S.-Mexico relationship and how necessary cooperation is, according to a former Mexican ambassador.

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