Mindy Ragan Wood

Mindy Ragan Wood

Mindy covers the legislature for Oklahoma Voice. Her areas of focus include infrastructure, municipal government policies, and human services with an emphasis on the needs of intellectually vulnerable and physically challenged adults.

Agency finalizing rules for Oklahoma’s $215 million affordable housing program

By: - November 30, 2023

New homes and rental properties could hit the Oklahoma market in the next two years if rules for a $215 million state-funded construction loan program are approved by the end of the year, officials said. The Oklahoma Housing Finance Agency, which will oversee the state’s new Housing Stability Program, is crafting rules to administer it. […]

Efforts to criminalize homelessness growing in Oklahoma

By: - November 28, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — A national push to criminalize homelessness is impacting the state as cities and lawmakers introduce policies aimed at regulating encampments and other support for unhoused Oklahomans, legal experts say. Efforts to criminalize homelessness through tickets, fines or arrests aren’t new, but have increased in the last few years partly as a result […]

Audit dings Oklahoma Republican Party PAC for misreporting finances, election spending

By: - November 27, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — A federal audit uncovered millions in misreported income and expenses for a political action committee associated with the Oklahoma Republican Party.  A Federal Election Commission draft audit found the Oklahoma Leadership Council’s bank records did not match its federal campaign finance reports by nearly $2 million.  The council is a federal PAC […]

Oklahoma Turnpike Authority goes back to drawing board as work resumes on $5B ACCESS plan

By: - November 21, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma Turnpike Authority is rethinking its $5 billion turnpike expansion and improvement plans now that two lawsuits have been settled. The agency recently acquired $500 million in bonds that will allow it to resume engineering design work and property acquisitions, but will reprioritize the order of the projects, said agency spokesperson […]

Oklahoma AG sues Biden administration over family planning grant clawback

By: - November 20, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY – Attorney General Genter Drummond filed a federal lawsuit against the Biden administration for clawing back a nearly $5 million family planning grant from the Oklahoma State Department of Health. The Biden administration reallocated those funds to abortion-rights groups like Planned Parenthood, according to a Monday news release from Drummond’s office. After the […]

Report: Oklahoma could lack power reliability if extreme winter weather hits 

By: - November 17, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahomans could face rolling blackouts if extreme weather rolls in this winter, a new report found. The North American Electric Reliability Corporation’s 2023 report listed Oklahoma and the central U.S. region’s power reliability at an elevated threat level if the extreme cold weather hits the region. NERC is a non-profit organization that […]

Deanna Fields, Manufactured Housing Association of Oklahoma

Advocates urge lawmakers to ease barriers to affordable housing

By: - November 15, 2023

Oklahoma could increase the number of affordable homes and rental units if lawmakers ease city building codes and fund new grant programs, advocates said. During the bipartisan interim study on Tuesday, affordable housing advocates called on lawmakers to lift city-imposed bans on manufactured housing, reign in rising insurance costs, and consider appropriating additional taxpayer funds […]

New technology helps Oklahoma officers, clinicians provide mental health care

By: - November 13, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Deputy Gene Bradley stared down the reality that an armed man who threatened to end his life might die like so many others experiencing a mental health crisis. But on that fall day in 2021, Bradley had a tool that would make a difference – an iPad that quickly […]

A lifeline: Free mental health hotline serves thousands of Oklahomans

By: - November 9, 2023

A new free mental health hotline fielded tens of thousands of calls from Oklahomans during its first year. The national 988 hotline launched in Oklahoma in July 2022, and operators have answered 50,000 calls for help, reports from the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services show. The hotline is a federally funded […]

Officials seek feedback on plan to make Oklahoma streets more friendly for cyclists, walkers

By: - November 6, 2023

State officials are finalizing transportation plans aimed at making communities more friendly to cyclists and pedestrians. The Oklahoma Department of Transportation’s public comment period on its inaugural Active Transportation Plan ends Nov. 9. The plan will serve as a guiding document for cities and rural communities looking to make infrastructure improvements, including better street lighting, […]

Search ramps up for new Oklahoma Ethics Commission executive director

By: - November 3, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma Ethics Commission members are moving quickly to hire an executive director ahead of what’s expected to be a busy 2024 election season. The commission met Thursday in a special session to review 14 resumes, and commission members could interview candidates as early as the next meeting on Nov. 17, said executive […]

Board updating 50-year plan to ensure Oklahomans have access to water 

By: - October 27, 2023

Oklahoma officials are seeking input from residents about their top water concerns as a state board begins to craft a plan to ensure enough water is available for the next 50 years. The Oklahoma Water Resources Board, which is tasked with predicting supply and demand, is updating its comprehensive plan. The Legislature appropriated $3.5 million […]