This Week in Oklahoma Politics
8:50 am
Fri February 13, 2015

Hiring Freeze, Field Tests and Doctor Shopping

This week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel and Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill about Governor Fallin issuing an executive order instituting a hiring freeze as well as a freeze on pay raises and bonuses for all state agencies. They also discuss the choice by a sub-committee chairman to not hear any bills negatively impacting the budget.

The trio also talk about State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister's decision to end field tests on Oklahoma students, a bill to crack down on "doctor shopping" for prescription drugs and two bills to make the gas chamber an acceptable form of execution.

StoryCorps
3:30 am
Fri February 13, 2015

Chapel Hill Shooting Victims Were 'Radiant,' Teacher Says

Yusor Abu-Salha was one of the victims in Tuesday's shooting in Chapel Hill, N.C. She sat down with her teacher, Mussarut Jabeen, at StoryCorps last May.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri February 13, 2015 11:54 am

Yusor Abu-Salha was one of the young students killed in Tuesday's shooting in Chapel Hill, N.C.

She and her former third-grade teacher, Mussarut Jabeen, spoke to StoryCorps in May. In fact, all three victims in the shooting — Abu-Salha, 21, her husband, Deah Barakat, 23, and her sister, Razan Abu-Salha, 19 — attended the Al-Iman School in Raleigh, N.C., where Jabeen taught.

Jabeen returned to StoryCorps Wednesday to talk about that 2014 conversation with Abu-Salha.

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Law
6:19 pm
Thu February 12, 2015

FBI Director Wades Into Contentious Debate Over Policing And Race

Originally published on Thu February 12, 2015 6:26 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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The Two-Way
4:47 pm
Thu February 12, 2015

Federal Judge Orders Ala. Official To Issue Marriage Licenses To Gay Couples

Former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore in 2006.
Rob Carr AP

Originally published on Thu February 12, 2015 7:22 pm

A battle between Alabama and the federal judiciary just turned another page, when a federal judge on Thursday ordered a state official to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Reuters reports:

"U.S. District Court Judge Callie Granade's order sought to clarify that Mobile County Probate Court Judge Don Davis should follow her directive, and not a contravening order from Alabama Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore that has led many state judges to refrain from issuing marriage licenses to gay couples. "

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11:44 am
Thu February 12, 2015

Meet the NBA Player-Turned-Artist Who Paints for George Clooney

The NY Post published a profile of former Oklahoma State and NBA basketball player Desmond Mason, who has created a successful post-basketball career for himself as an artist.
When Desmond Mason was a rookie in the NBA during the 2000-2001 season, he was summoned to the league's Midtown office for a sudden meeting with then-commissioner David Stern. Nervously, the 6-foot-6 player for the Seattle SuperSonics headed into the pooh-bah's office.
Carless in OKC
8:50 am
Thu February 12, 2015

Parking Causes Problems Even Without a Vehicle

Going without a car in an urban setting usually means not worrying about a parking space.

But, as John and Elizabeth Tankard learn parking still plays a role even for those who choose to go Carless in OKC.

What does it take to live without a car in OKC?  The Tankards are trying to find out. You can read all about their experiences at carlessinokc.blogspot.com.

StateImpact Oklahoma
7:53 am
Thu February 12, 2015

2015 Water Legislation Divides Oklahoma Politicians by Geography, Not Party

State Senator Eddie Fields' bill would create water planning districts that mirror the OWRB's membership districts.
Credit State of Oklahoma

After 5 years of drought, Oklahoma’s dwindling water resources have the attention of state lawmakers. There are competing bills to study moving water from southeast Oklahoma to the Altus area, and to encourage self-sufficient, regionally based plans to meet future water needs.

Balancing the interests of Oklahomans who have plenty of water with those who desperately need it is a political fight, but not between Republicans and Democrats

LOCAL CONCERNS

In southeast Oklahoma, it’s easy to find people who are passionate about water, like Chuck Hutchinson with Oklahomans for Responsible Water Policy.

“The town of Clayton lost their economic base [when Sardis Lake was built],” Hutchinson says. “Now they’ve converted over the years to a tourism base because of the lake. Now if they take the water out, they’re going to lose twice.”

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Headlines
7:03 am
Thu February 12, 2015

Headlines: Drought, Earthquakes & Pixar

Headlines for Thursday, February 12, 2015:

  • Drought conditions are spreading eastward across the state. (NewsOK)

  • More and more Oklahomans are getting earthquake insurance. (Journal Record)

  • A House panel approves a bill to ban texting and driving. (NewsOK)

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Health
3:42 am
Thu February 12, 2015

Smoking's Death Toll May Be Higher Than Anyone Knew

Tobacco smokers are more likely than nonsmokers to die from infection, kidney disease and, maybe, breast cancer.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu February 12, 2015 9:09 am

The U.S. surgeon general lists 21 deadly diseases that are caused by smoking. Now, a study in this week's New England Journal of Medicine points to more than a dozen other diseases that apparently add to the tobacco death toll.

To arrive at this conclusion, scientists from the American Cancer Society, the National Cancer Institute and several universities tracked nearly a million people for a decade and recorded their causes of death.

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Local News
5:28 pm
Wed February 11, 2015

Oklahoma House Passes Two Anti-Abortion Bills

Two anti-abortion measures have been approved in the Oklahoma House.

The House Public Health Committee on Wednesday approved the "Oklahoma Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act," which would outlaw certain late-term abortions. The bill provides an exception in cases where the abortion was necessary to prevent a serious health risk to the mother. It now heads to the full House.

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