Member Benefits: 'KOSU Alive' T-Shirt, Radio Tower Socks & Brewery Tours

We're happy to offer several special benefits for KOSU members during the 2017 Spring Membership Drive (taking place between Wednesday, March 1 to Wednesday, March 8). Make your pledge now! 1. Pledges of $60 ($5/month) will be eligible for the 2017 Keep It Local card. The Keep It Local OK card help you discover the best spots in town by rewarding you with discounts and incentives at locally-owned businesses across the state of Oklahoma. Businesses located in Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Edmond,...

Read More
LLUDO / FLICKR (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

The Oklahoma state Senate approved a bill Tuesday that would bring the state in compliance with the federal 2005 REAL ID Act. The bill establishes two forms of Oklahoma driver's licenses. One meets REAL ID requirements, and the other one does not.

State senator David Holt, R-Oklahoma City, voted in favor of House 1845. He says Oklahomans will not be required to present new information to get a license.

U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR

Frigid temperatures never fully took hold in Oklahoma this winter. February saw record high temperatures, and instead of ice and snow, wildfires were the main weather-related concern, and drought — though improved — has persisted across much of the state.

In a statement summarizing February’s weather highlights and looking ahead to March, State Climatologist Gary McManus says the first two months of 2017 broke the record for the warmest combined January and February in state history.

The Oklahoma Supreme Court has granted a request by the Attorney General’s office to delay a lower court’s order requiring the agency to turn over records sought by a watchdog group.

The Center for Media and Democracy sued the agency in February to force it to handover emails sent during the tenure of former attorney general Scott Pruitt, now administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Updated at 10:28 a.m. ET

Donald Trump's first speech to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday night was the occasion for his most presidential performance to date, balancing a reprise of his angry campaign themes with a recitation of hopes and dreams for the nation.

It was his most successful, if not his first, effort at assuming the public persona and personal demeanor associated with his new office. He stuck to the script on his teleprompter, spoke graciously to individuals in the audience and refrained from attacks on critics, rivals or adversaries.

Headlines for Wednesday, March 1, 2017:

  • Oklahoma moves one step closer becoming Real ID compliant. (Tulsa World)

  • Bill to end pipeline protests passes the State House. (Tulsa World)

Trump Aims To 'Eliminate' Clean Water Rule

23 hours ago

Updated 5:35 p.m. ET

The Trump administration is moving to roll back an environmental rule intended to define which small bodies of water are subject to federal authority under the Clean Water Act.

Headlines for Tuesday, February 28, 2017:

  • A Tulsa Public School survey shows the number one reason teachers leave their jobs is low pay. (Tulsa World)

  • A 1992 law is making it hard for lawmakers to increase revenue in the state. (NewsOK)

Headlines for Monday, February 27, 2017:

  • The state can’t afford to help some of its most vulnerable residents. (Journal Record)

  • Lawmakers say Lamb's cabinet quit won't impact budget talks. (Tulsa World)

We're happy to offer several special benefits for KOSU members during the 2017 Spring Membership Drive (taking place between Wednesday, March 1 to Wednesday, March 8).

1. Pledges of $60 ($5/month) will be eligible for the 2017 Keep It Local card.

There are renewed efforts at the state level to pass so-called religious freedom bills. LGBTQ rights advocates believe that's because local lawmakers are anticipating support from the Trump administration.

In Alabama, there's a bill that allows adoption agencies that are religiously affiliated to hold true to their faith if they don't think same-sex couples should be parents. The psychiatric community has found no evidence that having same-sex parents harms children.

Pages

KOSU's Michael Cross talks about political news in Oklahoma with ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel and Republican political consultant Neva Hill.

Stream classical music via our partners at KUCO!

Education News

oksenate.gov

A Senate education committee passed a school choice measure on Monday, which riled a lot of debate from lawmakers.

Education Savings Accounts are a touchy subject. They allow parents to use state tax dollars, that would normally go to a public school, towards private school tuition instead.

Senator Rob Standridge says his ESA bill, SB560, is aimed at helping low-income families afford a better educational option for their child.

oksenate.gov

A Oklahoma Senate subcommittee passed seven bills about teacher pay on Wednesday, each one providing a different solution to the teacher pay problem.

Some of the bills propose $1,000 raises, others $10,000. Some provide funding mechanisms, while others do not.

Senator J.J. Dossett (D-Owasso) says this is just the beginning of the conversation. He says the legislature knows raising teacher pay is the right thing to do and they've just got to figure out the right way to do it.

With a nearly $900 million budget shortfall, Oklahoma lawmakers want accountability for every penny. But within the coffers of private charter school management companies are millions of dollars that lawmakers can't see. 

Senator Jason Smalley wants to know exactly how much schools are spending on administration. He filed a bill to find out, because right now he said it’s not clear.

“Are all the individuals that should be classified as administration costs, actually being reported as that?” he asked. “I think that’s what the greater conversation is.”

More Education News
A weekly two-hour show of Oklahoma music, from across the state. The show opens a window of Oklahoma music to the rest of the world.