Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The Legal Complications of Oklahoma’s State Question to Constutionally Protect Farming

State Question 777 would create a constitutional right to farm and ranch in Oklahoma, giving the agriculture industry unique protection from the state legislature. The ballot question concerns livestock and crops, but legal experts say the statewide measure will likely come down to lawsuits and courts. In the weeks leading up to the November election, officials in cities and towns across the state have urged Oklahomans to vote no on SQ 777. The Oklahoma City Council in September voted 6 to 2...
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Video Breakdown: State Question 779

As KOSU and KGOU began crafting ideas for our collaborative election project Oklahoma Engaged, we were interested in several forms of storytelling. This included informative and in-depth radio stories and video profiles of folks in a south Oklahoma City district. But, we also wanted to strip away all extraneous information and get down to the bare bones of a couple of the seven state questions. And to do that, we commissioned two videos from Blake Behrens of Radfive Creative. The first video...
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The final presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump is on Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET. It's the last chance either candidate will have to make a closing argument before tens of millions of voters.

It follows yet another unprecedented week in the campaign, in which Trump has repeatedly questioned the legitimacy of the election, predicting that it will be stolen from him through media bias and massive voter fraud.

The Obama administration is announcing a series of recommendations for ensuring the safety of the nation's more than 400 underground natural gas storage wells.

Allison Herrera

Long before the gushers of Glenpool, before any oil mansions dotted the tree-lined Arkansas River and before the automobile-ruled the streets of Tulsa, there were the Locv Pokv people, or as some know them- the Muscogee Creek. Locv Pokv was the daughter of the old town in the deep south of Georgia and Alabama, the Turtle Meeting Place.

The state auditor’s office released findings Tuesday from an investigation into the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s office. The findings say the sheriff’s office unlawfully spent department funds under Whetsel’s leadership.

According to the review, the department failed to pay healthcare contracts even though money was available at the time. Auditors also determined Whetsel purchased nearly one million dollars worth of vehicles while other obligations weren’t met.

Kate Carlton Greer / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

Oklahoma’s prisons are crowded, and the state continues to incarcerate offenders at the second- highest rate in the nation, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. Two state questions on the November 8 ballot aim to ease both of those strains.  

Like most farmers, Mark Nelson, who grows corn, soybeans and wheat near Louisburg, Kan., is getting squeezed. He's paying three times more for seed than he used to, while his corn sells for less than half what it brought four years ago.

"It's a – that's a challenge," Nelson says. "You're not going to be in the black, let's put it that way."

Low commodity prices are rippling up and down the farm-economy food chain — from the farm to the boardroom — and it has many of the huge companies that control farm inputs looking to a new future.

Headlines for Tuesday, October 18, 2016:

  • Authorities investigate the crash which killed former football player Dennis Byrd. (Tulsa World)

Earlier this month Here & Now visited the Chickasaw Cultural Center in Sulphur, Oklahoma — a center not only for culture and history, but also the preservation and revitalization of the critically endangered Chickasaw language.

Among the 30 or so remaining native speakers we met was Jerry Imotichey. He grew up speaking Chickasaw, and called the language and culture his “soul.”

As KOSU and KGOU began crafting ideas for our collaborative election project Oklahoma Engaged, we were interested in several forms of storytelling. This included informative and in-depth radio stories and video profiles of folks in a south Oklahoma City district.

Headlines for Monday, October 17, 2016:

  • Oklahoma political experts are already looking at statewide elected races in 2018. (NewsOK)

  • Tulsa police paid more than $216,000 in overtime after the fatal shooting of Crutcher. (Tulsa World)


Join us in our collaborative series with KGOU focusing on election issues in Oklahoma.

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

Education News

Emily Wendler / KOSU

Economists from the University of Oklahoma studied the potential impact that State Question 779 would have on city governments, and found that small cities may have reason to worry, but larger cities shouldn’t.

State Question 779 proposes raising the state sales tax one cent in order to fund $5,000 raises for teachers, and other aspects of education. But many city governments oppose the measure because they rely on sales tax increases too, to build streets, fire stations, and other things.  

Emily Wendler / KOSU

Data presented at Oklahoma City Public Schools' Monday night board meeting shows many of the district’s academic goals for the year were not met. 

The goals were set last year during "The Great Conversation," which was a series of community meetings where parents and school staff produced goals for the district. They also agreed on specific skills they wanted each child to leave school with.

Josh Robinson

Oklahoma teachers haven’t received a statewide pay raise in eight years. But this November, voters will have a chance to boost teacher pay if they approve State Question 779, which would fund the raises through a one-cent sales tax.

Education advocates say this could prevent teachers from fleeing the state, or the profession, for better paying jobs. But opponents argue the proposal would create an entirely different set of problems.


There’s a fairly widespread consensus in Oklahoma that education needs more funding.

More Education News

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