Ryan LaCroix / KOSU

State Question 790: The Case For and Against A Ten Commandments Monument

Just over a year ago—under the dark of night—a Ten Commandments monument was removed from the state Capitol grounds. Representative Mike Ritze paid for it. Governor Mary Fallin supported it. But its placement prompted a public debate—and ultimately a lawsuit—that forced its removal. The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled it had to come down and based their decision on a section of the Oklahoma Constitution—Article 2, Section 5—that says public money and property may not be used to benefit religion....
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Jenny Mae Harms / KOSU

NPR CEO Jarl Mohn Visits KOSU

NPR CEO Jarl Mohn visited KOSU's Oklahoma City studios on Friday to get a tour of the station and meet the staff. In this thirty minute conversation, Mohn talks about the importance of non-profit journalism, NPR's recent ratings increase, and the importance of being live and local—in news and in music.
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On October 14, Luket Ministries, an Oklahoma missionary group working in Eastern Uganda, released a music video that has caused quite a stir.

This is Sample Size, our weekly new music feature with KOSU's Ryan LaCroix and LOOKatOKC music critic Matt Carney.

Today, Matt plays new music from Crying, Randy Newman, and Lady Gaga.

Headlines for Friday, October 21, 2016:

  • A McAlester man dies in Afghanistan attack which also killed an Illinois soldier. (Tulsa World)

  • Oklahoma turns down Russian requests to monitor state elections. (Tulsa World)

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill and ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel about State Question 781 to put more money into drug rehabilitation and mental health programs for inmates and a new report from the State Auditor and Inspector showing mismanagement of funds for Oklahoma County Sheriff John Whetsel.

Josh Robinson

Pete White drives slowly through his old neighborhood in south Oklahoma City. The 78-year-old Oklahoma City councilman has lived in the area his entire life.

“This is the house I grew up in right here,” White said as he drove through a tree lined neighborhood of modest homes.

He pulled onto Southwest 25th Street in the business district of an area known as Capitol Hill. White pointed out the location of former businesses. Department stores, a doctor’s office, and pharmacies. All of them are long gone.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

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.

Supporters and opponents of several state questions on the ballot in Oklahoma have spent nearly $3 million to air television ads on the issues ahead of the November election.

Data released Thursday by the Center for Public Integrity show more than 3,800 ads have aired on proposals to impose a 1 percent sales tax for education, restrict oversight of farming and ranching and change the state's alcohol laws and criminal justice system.

Headlines for Thursday, October 20, 2016:

  • The State Election Board is easing concerns over Oklahoma’s voting system. (NewsOK)

  • An Oklahoma non-profit brings high speed Internet for research and education. (Journal Record)

Kate Carlton Greer / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

Oklahoma’s Department of Corrections says one of its biggest challenges is recruiting and retaining employees.

During an interim study Wednesday, Prison Director Joe Allbaugh told lawmakers turnover for the agency is roughly 28 percent. Correctional officers in particular, Allbaugh said, are even harder to retain. Turnover for those positions is approaching 40 percent.

He blamed the high-stress nature of the job combined with low-pay and long hours and said many cadets have a false idea of what being a prison officer entails.  

OETA, Oklahoma’s Public Television, is celebrating its Diamond Anniversary after 60 years on air.

KOSU's Michael Cross spoke with PBS President and CEO Paula Kerger who says she's happy to come to the Sooner State and join in the celebration.

You can find out more on the 60th anniversary celebration on the OETA website.


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

The Oklahoma City Metropolitan Library System is creating a new program to give easier access to OCPS students.

KOSU's Michael Cross talks with library spokesperson Kim Terry about One Card.

You can find out more information on the Metro Library website.

Emily Wendler / KOSU

Oklahoma leads the nation in cuts to per-pupil funding for the third straight year.

According to a new national comparison conducted by the Center on Budget Policy and Priorities, the amount of money the state spends through the funding formula on each student’s education has dropped by nearly 27 percent since 2008.

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.  

More Education News

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