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Bill Passes on second try
4:07 pm
Tue March 4, 2014

Oklahoma House Passes Bill To Extend Tax Credit To Film Industry

Credit popturfdotcom / Flickr.com

The Oklahoma House has — on its second try — passed a bill to extend a tax credit for the film industry.

The House voted 65-28 for the measure Tuesday after reconsidering the bill. It had fallen three votes short of passing on Monday.

The state provides rebates to filmmakers amounting to $1 for every $3 dollars they spend on movie productions in Oklahoma, up to a total of $5 million. The program is scheduled to expire July 1. The bill by Republican Rep. Todd Thomsen of Ada extends the credit for 10 years to 2024.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
1:28 pm
Tue March 4, 2014

Most Of The State Abnormally Dry As Drought Creeps East Into Oklahoma City

The latest U.S. Drought Monitor map of Oklahoma as of February 25, 2014.
Credit U.S. Drought Monitor

Save for a tiny corner of far southeast Oklahoma, the entire state is either abnormally dry, or already in drought.

Areas of severe, extreme, and exceptional drought, the worst categories, are still confined to the western part of the state, with far southwest Oklahoma suffering the most. But the latest data from the U.S. Drought Monitor show moderate drought conditions moving east and into Oklahoma City.

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Oklahoma News
12:42 pm
Tue March 4, 2014

Hearing On Oklahoma Executions Moved To U.S. Court

Credit T Woodard / Flickr Creative Commons

A lawsuit challenging Oklahoma's law that shields details of drugs used in executions has been moved to federal court.

The suit filed by death row inmates Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner was set for a hearing Tuesday in Oklahoma County District Court, but the hearing was canceled after the case was transferred to federal court at the request of the state.

Lockett faces a March 20 execution while Warner is set to be executed March 27.

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Oklahoma News
9:06 am
Tue March 4, 2014

Oklahoma City Airport Lands New Flights To North Carolina

Credit BriYYZ / Flickr Creative Commons

New nonstop flights to Charlotte, N.C., are coming this summer to Will Rogers World Airport in Oklahoma City.

The new service will be operated by US Airways Express and regional partner Mesa Airlines. US Airways merged with American Airlines in December, forming American Airlines Group Inc.

The airlines say the new flights will begin July 2. The service includes two departures and two arrivals daily to and from Charlotte. The Bombardier CRJ-900 aircraft seats up to 70 passengers and includes nine first-class seats.

Flights will be open for sale beginning Saturday.

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Oklahoma News
8:00 am
Tue March 4, 2014

Pro-Pot Petition Seeks To Decriminalize Cannabis In Oklahoma City

Proponent Brittney Guest signs the petition to decriminalize marijuana in Oklahoma City at City Hall Monday afternoon.
Credit Provided / Reform OKC

A group of marijuana advocates filed an initiative petition Monday to decriminalize marijuana in Oklahoma City.

Reform OKC will start gathering signatures Friday.

State Senator Constance Johnson (D-Oklahoma City) has been an outspoken supporter of cannabis legalization at the state Capitol. She says Oklahoma City’s petition could pave the way for a larger, statewide effort to legalize the drug.

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Some House Committees Get New Leaders
6:19 pm
Mon March 3, 2014

New Speaker Of The House Hickman Announces Changes In Leadership

Credit Oklahoma State Legislature

The newly elected speaker of the Oklahoma House of Representatives has announced several changes to the chairs and vice chairs of various House committees.

Republican Speaker Jeff Hickman announced the leadership changes on Tuesday.

Among the major changes were Norman Rep. Aaron Stiles replacing Rep. Leslie Osborn as chair of the Judiciary Committee, and Rep. Mike Reynolds replacing Rep. Jason Murphey as chair of the Government Modernization and Accountability Committee. Osborn will now chair a budget subcommittee instead.

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Lacked three votes
4:41 pm
Mon March 3, 2014

No More Tax Credits For Film Industry

Credit twoshortplanks / Flickr Creative Commons

The Oklahoma House has defeated legislation to extend a tax credit program for the film industry.

House members voted 48-43 for the measure Monday — three short of the 51 votes needed to pass in the 101-member House. Its author, Republican Rep. Todd Thomsen of Ada, kept the measure alive by announcing a plan to reconsider the vote.

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Manager's Desk
3:23 pm
Mon March 3, 2014

Tornado Preparedness Public Forum

Path of the El Reno Tornado on May 31, 2013.
Credit Norman Forecast Office / National Weather Service

This week, I’m inviting you to an important public forum about tornado preparedness and storm safety on Wednesday, March 12 at the Moore Public Library.

You’ve heard KGOU's special reporting project that is funded by CPB -- Ahead of the Storm: The Oklahoma Tornado Project. This public meeting is part of this project.

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Oklahoma Watch
11:04 am
Mon March 3, 2014

Fallin To Release Withheld Emails After Leaving Office

Gov. Mary Fallin
Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Thirty-one documents related to the Affordable Care Act that Gov. Mary Fallin has refused to release and that are the subject of a lawsuit against her will be archived and made available to the public after Fallin leaves office, her spokesman said.

Fallin’s office, however, has not yet decided whether to stipulate that release of the archived records be delayed for a certain period after her term ends.

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State Capitol
9:33 am
Mon March 3, 2014

House Leaders Link Pension Overhaul To Pay

Credit LLudo / Flickr Creative Commons

A state lawmaker says members of the Oklahoma House are urging the Senate and Gov. Mary Fallin to commit funding targeted pay increases before signing off on a pension overhaul bill.

State Rep. Leslie Osborn's (R-Mustang) measure would revamp the state's employee compensation system. Osborn says her plan will force lawmakers to make some hard financial decisions in other areas.

The Oklahoman reports Osborn has the support of Republican House Speaker Jeff Hickman of Fairview.

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