A business conditions index for nine Midwest and Plains states, including Oklahoma, has dropped after rising the previous two months.
The overall Mid-America Business Conditions Index plunged to a growth neutral 50.0 in October from 54.8 in September.
Creighton University economist Ernie Goss oversees the survey, and he says the partial government shutdown and slower business activity for firms tied to agriculture pushed overall economic conditions lower for the month.
Thousands of federal workers in Oklahoma were furloughed because of the budget stalemate in Washington, D.C., including those in charge of operating and maintaining dozens of campsites and parks run by the U.S. government.
In April, more than 1,100 workers died and thousands more were injured when a garment factory collapsed in Bangladesh. The deadliest garment industry disaster in history focused attention on the working conditions in clothing factories across the developing world.
Editor's Note: This is part one in StateImpact Oklahoma's "Twister Truths" series where we use data to kick the tires on the conventional wisdom underlying severe weather policy in Oklahoma.
In Oklahoma, state and local emergency authorities emphasize individual shelters in peoples’ homes over communal shelters in schools or other civic buildings. As we reported here, almost all the federal disaster funding the state receives has been directed to rebates for the construction of residential shelters and safe rooms.
Public meetings on the recently approved draft of what would be Tulsa’s biggest ever capital improvement initiative continue through August. The list of potential projects range from widening streets and repairing bridges to replacing city pools with aquatic centers and building new zoo exhibits.
But paying the nearly $1 billion price tag is forcing Tulsa to get creative, as the Tulsa World‘s Zack Stoycoff reports:
Enid is growing. It’s population is on the rise thanks to the oil and gas industry, and its importance as an agricultural center. In fact, the city is expected to add 1,700 more jobs over the next two years. All good news, right?
Except there’s really no place for new residents to live. Enid has been experiencing a housing shortage since 2008, when, as The Journal Record‘s Molly M. Fleming reports, more than 100 homes were built in Garfield County:
Of the many ideas for changes to state policy following May’s deadly tornado outbreak —changing building codes to make public structures safer, requiring shelters in new school buildings, providing money to upgrade schools without shelters — the one that has the best chance of actually happening is ‘tornado days.’
Local superintendents don’t need any approval to cancel school in the winter— or spring, when sunny weather can quickly turn violent.