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"the wrong side of history"
6:13 pm
Mon February 10, 2014

Lawmakers Send Letter To NFL Over Team Name

Credit Keith Allison / Flickr.com

The latest back-and-forth over the Washington Redskins name includes a stern letter from two lawmakers and a public relations move from the team.

A letter sent Monday from Sen. Maria Cantwell of Washington state and Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma tells NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell that the league is on "the wrong side of history" and mentions the league's tax-exempt status. Cantwell chairs the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
1:28 pm
Mon February 10, 2014

Oil Boom Keeping Western Oklahoma Towns Afloat Amid Worsening Drought

Credit Al Jazeera English / Flickr Creative Commons

Drought and agriculture don’t mix very well. So after three years of intense drought, you might expect rural western Oklahoma communities — where fortunes have traditionally hinged on the condition of wheat crops — to be dying on the vine.

But no. As The Journal Record‘s Brian Brus reports, many of these towns are adapting to a new economy with a little help from the oil and gas industry.

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11:17 am
Mon February 10, 2014

As Drug Deaths Rise, Millions of Narcotic Prescriptions Filled

Lead in text: 
Leading the list of Prescription Monitoring Program prescriptions and overdose contributors are three popular pharmaceuticals: hydrocodone, an opiod painkiller sold under the brand names Lortab, Vicodin, Vicoprofen, Norco and Tussionex; oxycodone, another opiod painkiller sold as OxyContin and Percoset, and alprazolam, an anti-anxiety drug marketed as Xanax.
Oklahoma pharmacies filled nearly 10 million prescriptions for narcotic painkillers and other controlled dangerous substances last year, according to newly obtained state data. Those prescriptions - an average of 68 per patient, including refills - contained 597 million doses of painkillers, tranquilizers, sleeping pills, steroids and other controlled pharmaceuticals tracked by the state's Prescription Monitoring Program.
State Capitol
11:04 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Hickman Replaces Shannon As House Speaker

State Rep. Jeff Hickman (R-Fairview) at Gov. Mary Fallin's State of the State address - February 3, 2014.
Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The 72 Republicans in the Oklahoma House of Representatives have selected 40-year-old state Rep. Jeff Hickman of Fairview as the next speaker of the House, one of the most powerful positions in state government.

The Republican caucus met behind closed doors Monday morning and selected Hickman via secret ballot.

The speaker's post was vacated last week when T.W. Shannon stepped down to focus on his race for the U.S. Senate.

Hickman previously served as speaker pro tem, the No. 2 spot in the House, and lost the speaker's race against Shannon by a razor-thin margin.

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State Capitol
9:31 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Republicans Voting On Next Oklahoma House Speaker

Credit LLudo / Flickr Creative Commons

The 72-member House Republican caucus is meeting behind closed doors to select the new Speaker of the House.

The House caucus is scheduled to meet at 10 a.m. Monday and will cast secret ballots to determine the winner.

Reps. Jeff Hickman of Fairview and Mike Jackson of Enid are vying for the post, one of the most powerful positions in state government. The speaker helps divvy up the state's $7 billion budget and helps shape the policy debate in the Legislature.

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Oklahoma Tornado Project
7:30 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Fallin Introduces Storm Shelter Plan Amid Lawsuit From Shelter Advocacy Group

Governor Mary Fallin tours the Plaza Elementary School site days after the May 20 Moore tornado
Credit The National Guard

In her State of the State address last week, Gov. Mary Fallin discussed her plan to build storm shelters in schools across the state. The speech came the same day a school shelter advocacy group filed a lawsuit against the governor for not promptly responding to its open records request. Fallin’s apparent change of course is not unusual, but its timing has raised some eyebrows.   

When Danni Legg entered the Governor’s office last week, she was looking for answers.

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Earthquake
10:06 pm
Sat February 8, 2014

Earthquake Rattles Residents Near Langston

Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

READ: StateImpact's Oklahoma Earthquake Coverage

The U.S. Geological Survey says a 4.4-magnitude earthquake has shaken central Oklahoma, but there are no reports of damage or injuries.

The quake was reported around 8:15 p.m. Saturday and struck about five miles south-southwest of the town of Langston. The USGS reports it had a depth of more than two miles.

Geologists say earthquakes that are 2.5 to 3.0 in magnitude are generally the smallest felt by humans.

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Manager's Desk
6:00 am
Sat February 8, 2014

For The Love Of KGOU

Happy Valentines Day
Credit Laura Knoll / KGOU

This is the most romantic week of the year, leading up to the most romantic day – Valentine’s Day.  Since the fourteen hundreds, this time has grown into a great tradition for expressions of love and appreciation. So many poems and cards, so many songs and movies all pay tribute to love.

You know, it is possible to show a little love for KGOU.  So I adapted a poem…. 

The rose is red, the violet is blue.

The sound is smart on KGOU.

You have my ear, I listen all day.

I want you to know this on Valentine’s Day.

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Indian Times
10:25 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Native Crossroads Film Festival To Premier Native Made Films

Chaske Spencer
Credit musicgrl87 / Flickr.com

The 2nd Annual Native Crossroads Film Festival is bringing several feature and short films that will explore the theme of this year's festival – links between land and indigenous cultural identities. Assistant Professor Joshua Nelson (Cherokee) said this year’s top three films to be screened are making their Oklahoma premier.

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Newcomer To Politics
4:29 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Republican Professor Plans Run For Senate

Credit University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

An associate professor of history at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma in Chickasha says he's joining a growing Republican field in the race for the state's open U.S. Senate seat.

Kevin Crow told The Associated Press on Friday that he is a candidate for the seat that is being vacated early by U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn. Crow planned to formally announce his candidacy at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Canadian Valley Technology Center in Chickasha.

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