Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Uptick in Quakes Could Prompt Action From Oklahoma Lawmakers

The power and frequency of earthquakes in Oklahoma have been increasing, but the Legislature has done little to try to curb the temblors that scientists have linked to the underground disposal of oil and gas drilling wastewater. That could change this year, as angry residents have been increasingly turning up at town hall meetings and legislative hearings to call for state leaders to address the problem. According to the U.S. Geological Survey, Oklahoma this year has already had more than 90 ...
Read More

Weeknights with Ferris

Hear Ferris O'Brien every weeknight, from 9 p.m. to midnight, on The Spy.

Iowa has once again proved its perennial resistance to political inevitability and the power of personality.

In this year's iteration of the Iowa caucuses, national polling leaders Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton had their campaign momentum slowed in significant ways by party activists who preferred their rivals.

A big win in Iowa might have set either leader on the path to a relatively easy nomination. But that was not to be, and now both Trump and Clinton face difficult and perhaps protracted struggles to overcome rivals they had hoped to dismiss.

Mike Huckabee is ending his presidential campaign after a disappointing Iowa finish.

The former Arkansas governor — who won the Iowa caucuses in 2008 — announced on his Twitter account that he will be suspending his campaign. He was finishing a disappointing 9th in the state he carried eight years ago.

After a disappointing performance in Iowa, Martin O'Malley is suspending his presidential campaign.

Sources close to the former Maryland governor confirmed the news to NPR and say he will speak soon in Des Moines. Despite campaigning heavily in the Hawkeye State, O'Malley barely registered on Monday night. In many caucuses, he failed to achieve viability — or at least 15 percent at a caucus site — and his supporters were forced to shift their support to either former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton or Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Gov. Mary Fallin's $6.99 billion budget proposal for next year is only $52 million less than that of the current fiscal year and relies on revenue "enhancements" and "adjustments" to overcome what could become a $1 billion budget hole.

Here are the winners and losers in the governor's budget plan:

WINNERS:

Two E. coli outbreaks linked to Chipotle restaurants "appear to be over," the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.

The first, larger outbreak hit 55 people in 11 states, with Washington having the most cases, the CDC says. The second outbreak, which was caused by a different strain of E. coli, infected five people in Oklahoma, Kansas and North Dakota.

The CDC says it last received a report of an illness related to the outbreaks on Dec. 1, 2015.

The Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality just added eight lakes to its fish consumption advisory, which now includes 40 lakes in total. But that doesn’t necessarily mean the fish aren’t safe to eat. Just try not to eat too much.

Gov. Mary Fallin is preparing to deliver her sixth State of the State address to Oklahoma legislators, outlining her priorities for a state that is reeling from a downturn in the oil and gas industry.

The second-term Republican is expected to deliver her remarks about 12:45 p.m. Monday to a joint meeting of the House and Senate as the Legislature convenes its 2016 session. Fallin also will release her proposed balanced budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1, including how she will fill a $900 million hole. That is about a 13 percent reduction from last year's spending.

Headlines for Monday, February 1, 2016:

  • The new legislative session officially begins with the State of the State Address. (Tulsa World)

  • Breaking down State of the State Addresses of the past. (Tulsa World)

Allison Herrera

Soldiers returning from battle face special challenges. Thousands suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and their care can be more involved and long-term. The nation’s VA hospitals, although under recent scrutiny, will care for more than a million of the nation’s soldiers.

 

But, the nation’s Native American veterans face a set of extra challenges after fighting on the front lines.

 

U.S. Department of Education / Flickr

Oklahoma’s new English Language Arts and Math standards are finally complete, and have been approved by the State Board of Education. They now await the legislature’s approval. 

The Department of Education was tasked with creating new math and English standards after the Oklahoma legislature repealed the Common Core curriculum in 2014.

Pages

Education News

Lawmakers filed hundreds of education bills this session, seeking solutions to teacher pay, testing, and school funding in general. Here is a list of 30 bills that KOSU will be following closely this legislative session.

BILLS CONCERNING EDUCATION SAVINGS ACCOUNTS

U.S. Department of Education / Flickr

Oklahoma’s new English Language Arts and Math standards are finally complete, and have been approved by the State Board of Education. They now await the legislature’s approval. 

The Department of Education was tasked with creating new math and English standards after the Oklahoma legislature repealed the Common Core curriculum in 2014.

Oklahoma Senator David Holt is proposing $10,000 teacher pay raises over the next few years. And Holt says this can be done without raising taxes. 

His plan is three pronged. School districts would be consolidated and excess money would go to teacher pay. All revenue growth after fiscal year 2017 would go directly to raises, and the the state would find another $200 million by reforming tax credits.

Holt said legislators have a moral obligation to raise pay, and help solve the teacher shortage.

More Education News

KOSU Program

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.

Political News

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel and Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill about the State of the State Address from Governor Fallin, a plan to increase cigarette taxes by $1.50 per pack and bills to eliminate, reduce or put a moratorium on tax credits.

The trio also discuss Senator James Lankford's plan to eliminate federal tax credits on wind energy and the Iowa Caucus results with less than a month before Oklahoma's Presidential Primary on Super Tuesday.

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum ended his White House campaign on Wednesday and threw his support behind Florida Sen. Marco Rubio.

"We are suspending our campaign as of this moment," Santorum said on Fox News Channel's On the Record with Greta Van Susteren.

Santorum said that after much prayer, he had decided that he was suspending his campaign. After talking to Rubio for more than an hour on Tuesday, Santorum said, he decided to back him, calling him the best person to continue the message of fighting ISIS and defending "the central role of the family."

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul is suspending his campaign for president after a disappointing finish in Iowa, turning his focus now to his Senate re-election bid.

"Across the country thousands upon thousands of young people flocked to our message of limited government, privacy, criminal justice reform and a reasonable foreign policy. Brushfires of Liberty were ignited, and those will carry on, as will I," the Republican said in a statement.

More News