eCapitol
7:41 am
Tue September 17, 2013

Teacher Shortages Continue To Leave Numerous Vacancies In Oklahoma

Teacher shortages continue to increase across the state despite small progress made last session via legislation that would allow alternative certification for special education teachers through the use of a “boot camp.”

Since the state Board of Education approved the boot camps in the spring, the department has approved five providers and offered two boot camps itself, serving just over 100 participants.

Read more
College Football
6:20 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

OSU: Former NCAA Official To Investigate Charges of Misconduct

Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater, Okla.
Credit ptcruiser4dogs / Flickr.com

Oklahoma State University has appointed a former NCAA official to investigate alleged misconduct in the Cowboy football program.

OSU President Burns Hargis and the Board of Regents announced Monday that Charles E. Smrt will lead an independent review of alleged violations reported by Sports Illustrated.

Read more
Human Trafficking
4:13 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

42 Arrested In Oklahoma Sex Trafficking Investigation

Anonymous Female Prostitute
Credit allessandro isnotaurelio / Flickr.com

A total of 42 people have been arrested following a four-day investigation by the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics into sex trafficking in northeastern Oklahoma.

A spokesman for the agency, Mark Woodward, says OBN's Human Trafficking Unit launched the investigation after learning that individuals, including minors, were being forced into prostitution in Tulsa, Rogers, Ottawa, and Delaware counties.

Read more
Manager's Desk
1:13 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Support Public Radio

Support Public Radio!
Credit Hey Paul Studio / Creative Commons

September 15, 2013

This is from the Manager’s Desk.  

I’ve been talking about the sound reporting that public media presents every day.  That sound reporting is a major effort for both NPR and KGOU. 

NPR maintains 16 foreign bureaus and has an additional 7 foreign reporters.  On the domestic side, NPR has 20 bureaus throughout the states – and the closest one to us is in Dallas.  It means that NPR can respond to breaking news and provide deeper stories to understand that news.

Read more
Oklahoma Politics
11:10 am
Mon September 16, 2013

GOP Takeover In Oklahoma Explained

Credit Oklahoma Policy Institute

It wasn’t long ago that to be involved in a meaningful way in Oklahoma politics, office seekers had to have a “D” after their names. But in just a few years, that has turned around so that an “R” is now necessary to have a significant influence in state politics.

That change was not as sudden as it seems, according to political consultant Pat McFerron,“To me the question isn’t, ‘Why we’re so Republican now? It’s why were we so Democrat before?’”

Read more
Elections
10:31 am
Mon September 16, 2013

Independent Voters Outpacing GOP And Democrats In Oklahoma

2012 Oklahoma presidential election results. The darker red the county, the higher the vote for Republican candidate Mitt Romney.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Election officials say the number of independent voters has outpaced Republicans and Democrats in new voter registrations this year.

In March, Election Board officials removed about 145,000 inactive voters from the rolls. According to the Tulsa World, independents have added 4,582 new voters since then.

Republicans have added 1,544 new voters, while Democrats have decreased by 3,306.

Read more
Transportation
8:04 am
Mon September 16, 2013

Hundreds Of Oklahoma Bridges Outdated, In Poor Condition

Highway 51 bridge between Wagoner and Coweta, Okla. taken in 2009. After years of serving it's purpose, it is being replaced by a more standardized and safer deck.
Credit doug_wertman / Flickr Creative Commons

Despite increases in transportation funding and an aggressive program to improve the state's roads and bridges, federal data shows hundreds of Oklahoma bridges are outdated and in poor condition.

An Associated Press analysis of bridges in the National Bridge Inventory shows Oklahoma had 414 bridges across the state that are both structurally deficient and fracture critical.

Read more
Oklahoma Watch
6:37 am
Mon September 16, 2013

Unlike Nation, Oklahoma Is Failing To Reduce Drunken-Driving Deaths

Credit Oklahoma Watch

Listen to KGOU News Director Kurt Gwartney's conversation with Oklahoma Watch's Shaun Hittle.

During most of the past two decades, the annual number of alcohol-related traffic deaths across the country has fallen by about 20 percent, to more than 11,500.

More stringent drunken driving laws, widespread public education campaigns and safer vehicles have all played a role in that sharp reduction.

In Oklahoma, however, it’s been a much different story. Despite having the same safer vehicles, increased educational efforts and tougher laws, the state saw a 10 percent increase in alcohol-related traffic deaths between 1994 and 2012. The trend mystifies state public-safety officials.

Read more

Felix Contreras is co-host of Alt.Latino, NPR's web-based program about Latin Alternative music and Latino culture. It features music as well as interviews with many of the most well-known Latino musicians, actors, film makers and writers.

Previously, Contreras was a producer and reporter for NPR's Arts Desk and covered, among other stories and projects: a series reported from Mexico introducing the then-new musical movement called Latin Alternative; a series of stories on the financial challenges facing aging jazz musicians; and helped produce NPR's award winning series 50 Great Voices.

Indian Times
9:08 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Return To Longhorn Mountain: An Update

View from Longhorn Mountain
Credit Warren Queton

Summer is coming to a close and it was a headline making summer for Oklahoma’s natives and tribes. We revisit one of those stories, the fate of Longhorn Mountain.

Last June, it was learned that half of Longhorn Mountain near Lawton had been leased to a rock crushing company that would soon start mining gravel. Longhorn Mountain is a sacred site to the Kiowa Tribe that had passed out of tribal ownership, and though the tribe had been notified by the Oklahoma Department of Transportation about the construction of a road, they didn’t understand what exactly was going to happen.

Read more

Pages