Jackie Fortier / StateImpact Oklahoma

Investigators Accuse Former Oklahoma Health Department Lawyer Of Emailing Herself Threats

The former lawyer for the Oklahoma State Department of Health faces felony charges accusing her of sending herself threatening emails related to Oklahoma’s recently adopted medical marijuana rules. Oklahoma County prosecutors filed three separate charges Tuesday against Julie Ezell. The criminal complaint accuses Ezell of sending threats to her own government email account earlier this month and reporting the threats to health department investigators. Ezell did not respond to requests for...

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Kateleigh Mills / KOSU

Oklahoma Women Find Common Ground In Unease With Political Parties And Education Issues

Women are a key constituency for both of Oklahoma’s major political parties, and an increasing number of women are running for office. But data suggest a majority of Oklahoma women are disappointed with both major political parties. About 55 percent of women who responded to a political attitudes survey commissioned on behalf of stations for the Oklahoma Engaged project viewed the Democratic party unfavorably compared to about 60 percent for Republicans. That trend is reversed for men, who...

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'I Am Grateful That I Had You In My Life': An Aunt And Niece Reflect On Good Times, Hard Times

The StoryCorps mobile booth was in Oklahoma City in early 2018, and we're bringing you some of the stories that were recorded here. Locally recorded stories will air Wednesdays during Morning Edition and All Things Considered on KOSU. When thirty-seven-old Waneta Black was born with Down Syndrome, her aunt Lisa Shahan-Austin knew she was something special. Waneta and Lisa came to the StoryCorps Mobile Booth in Oklahoma City and reflected on the ways they have helped each other through some...

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The StoryCorps mobile booth was in Oklahoma City in early 2018, and we're bringing you some of the stories that were recorded here. Locally recorded stories will air Wednesdays during Morning Edition and All Things Considered on KOSU.

Headlines for Wednesday, July 11, 2018:

Ryan LaCroix / KOSU

Long before the Tonight Show, late night TV icon Johnny Carson was hosted a game show entitled “Who Do You Trust?”

If this show was still on the air today, and the topic was “Oklahoma Government,” it would likely be difficult to stretch contestants’ answers into the half-hour program. That’s because, data show, Oklahomans’ answers would be “no one.”

David Anderson

The Oklahoma State Board of Health on Tuesday approved emergency rules to regulate medical marijuana, which Oklahoma voters approved in June.

The 76 pages regulate the sale, cultivation and transportation of the drug — but the board made two big, last-minute changes.

What would the U.S. look like without Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case that legalized abortion nationwide?

That's the question now that President Trump has chosen conservative Judge Brett Kavanaugh as his nominee to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy.

By some accounts, nearly half of America's incarcerated population is mentally ill — and journalist Alisa Roth argues that most aren't getting the treatment they need.

Roth has visited jails in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Atlanta and a rural women's prison in Oklahoma to assess the condition of mentally ill prisoners. She says correctional officers are on the "front lines" of mental health treatment — despite the fact that they lack clinical training.

By the time Scott Pruitt resigned, his conduct as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency had become the subject of 12 to 18 investigations, audits and inquiries. It's hard to know the precise number, as only some of the cases are public, but Pruitt may have set some kind of ethics-in-government record.

Ethics advocates are asking how he stayed long enough to trigger that many probes.

Headlines for Tuesday, July 10, 2018:

DANK DEPOT / FLICKR/CC BY-NC 2.0

Modeling their recommendations on some of the most restrictive medical marijuana laws in the country, a group representing doctors, hospitals, clinics and other health professionals on Monday urged the state to prevent smokable marijuana from being sold at dispensaries, limit the number of dispensaries to 50 statewide, and require a pharmacist to be in the dispensary and “part of the approval process.”

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Education News

Emily Wendler / StateImpact Oklahoma

On the night of the primary elections, Ainsley Hoover was at a small watch party at the Chili’s restaurant in Enid. She had helped her friend, a fellow teacher, campaign for House District 41,  and they were anxiously awaiting the results.

Hoover, who was also tracking the vote totals for House District 40 with hopes the incumbent in that seat would lose, says she didn’t use to be political. When Hoover did vote, it was usually in the presidential election.

The U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling Wednesday that will reverberate through America's schools for years.

In Janus v. AFSCME, a 5-4 court majority overturned precedent, saying that public sector unions, like those that represent law enforcement, state employees, and, of course, teachers, can no longer collect what are known as agency fees from nonmembers.

When the Oklahoma Legislature passed House Bill 1010xx in March, it was the first time lawmakers had increased state taxes in 28 years. Both the House and the Senate applauded themselves.

The governor acted swiftly to sign the bill, and at first, it seemed like a reason for school leaders to celebrate. They had been begging lawmakers to increase teacher pay for years, and it finally happened.

But the excitement quickly faded.

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