Stitt Cabinet official’s concerns over Oklahoma education agency finances prompted resignation

BY: and - November 2, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — The governor’s former education secretary said she resigned from her position after three months because the state superintendent’s administration limited her oversight of his agency. Katherine Curry said she repeatedly asked for financial documents showing how the agency budgeted and spent money, but the Oklahoma State Department of Education never provided them. […]

More than 215 new Oklahoma laws take effect Wednesday

BY: - November 1, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — More than 215 new state laws take effect Wednesday that impact everything from state employee benefits and jury pay to oversight of medical marijuana grows and missing persons. The Oklahoma Legislature passed a slew of new laws this year. Here’s a look at some of the highlights. State employees will now be […]

Talihina veterans home closes this week, future of 600-acre property remains unclear

BY: - October 31, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — A state-run veterans home in Talihina will close this week, roughly one year before construction of a new facility in Sallisaw will be complete. Although the Talihina facility wasn’t originally slated to close until the Sallisaw home opened, construction cost overruns and delays in building the new veterans home led the Oklahoma […]

New law blocks local school board members from joining Oklahoma’s top education board

BY: - October 31, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — State lawmakers hope a new law that takes effect Wednesday will limit potential conflicts of interest between the state’s top school board and local districts.  House Bill 2678 prohibits the appointment of a local school board member to the Oklahoma State Board of Education, which supervises the state’s public education system. The […]

Politicians love to cite crime data. It’s often wrong.

BY: - October 31, 2023

When Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis announced his presidential campaign in May, he proudly told the nation that Florida’s crime rate in 2021 had reached a 50-year low. But really, DeSantis couldn’t say for sure. That’s because fewer than 1 in 10 law enforcement agencies in his state had reported their crime statistics to the […]

Members of U.S. House GOP describe threats sparked by votes against Jim Jordan for speaker

BY: and - October 20, 2023

WASHINGTON — Nebraska GOP Rep. Don Bacon said his wife slept with a gun for protection after she received threatening phone calls demanding that her husband support Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan’s bid for U.S. House speaker. Bacon was among a handful of members who reported threats and the targeting of family members after opposing the […]

Oklahoma lawmakers struggle to tackle artificial intelligence regulations

BY: - October 20, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma lawmakers are struggling to regulate the artificial intelligence industry even as interest in the technology and its availability continues to grow. Experts say AI is now present in everything from cell phone apps and facial recognition software to ChatGPT, which allows users to ask questions and receive human-like replies based on […]

Oklahoma legislative leaders to get pay increases. Most lawmakers will not.

BY: - October 17, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — Legislative leaders will receive a pay increase next year, but most legislators will not, a state compensation board decided Tuesday. The Legislative Compensation Board voted unanimously to increase by 5% the stipends legislative leaders receive on top of their annual salaries. House Speaker Charles McCall, R-Atoka, and Senate President Pro Tem Greg […]

Oklahoma official renews call to boost film rebate in light of ‘Killers of the Flower Moon’

BY: - October 17, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma’s lieutenant governor hopes a blockbuster movie filmed in Oklahoma will reignite a legislative conversation about increasing the cap on the state’s film incentive. Lt. Gov. Matt Pinnell hopes when lawmakers watch Martin Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon” in theaters, they think about the economic impact that production and others have […]

Oklahoma providers, advocates worry as trans youth face gender care restrictions

BY: - October 13, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — Transgender youth who receive hormone medications as part of their gender-affirming care will have their access cut off next month. Advocates and providers are worried about what full implementation of a new state law that bans gender-affirming care for minors could mean for transgender youth who will soon be prohibited from accessing […]

Oklahoma state agencies consider pay hikes as report finds many workers are underpaid

BY: - October 11, 2023

OKLAHOMA CITY — Agency officials are examining and, in some cases, increasing staff pay after a report released this year found that the majority of state employees are underpaid compared to their private-sector counterparts. The Oklahoma Tax Commission is increasing its employees’ pay in response to the report that shows more than half of state […]

Lawmakers consider starting nuclear energy program in Oklahoma

BY: - October 6, 2023

Advocates urged state lawmakers to consider bringing nuclear energy technology to Oklahoma as the federal government has set aside billions in an effort to incentivize expansion efforts nationwide. Local energy experts though warned embracing nuclear energy technology would increase utility rates. They also raised questions about safety. Oklahoma relies on wind, natural gas and coal […]