This Week in Oklahoma Politics
8:50 am
Fri April 3, 2015

Teachers, Doctors and Climate Change

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel and Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill about Monday's teacher rally and the vote a few days earlier to ban payroll deductions to teachers' unions.

The trio also discuss the new law signed by Governor Fallin to require doctors to check an online database of prescription drugs to crack down on abuse and Oklahoma emergency officials have to make hazard plans dealing with climate change or risk losing grant money.

Headlines
8:04 am
Fri April 3, 2015

Headlines: Teacher Union Dues, More Energy Layoffs & Thunder Defense

Headlines for Friday, April 3, 2015:

  • Governor Fallin signs a bill banning payroll deductions for dues to teachers unions. (Tulsa World)

  • Another energy company announces layoffs. (Journal Record)

  • The deaths of four people in Tulsa leave the community perplexed. (KJRH)

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Environment
11:11 am
Thu April 2, 2015

The View From Sardis Lake: Why Moving Water to Where It’s Needed is So Hard

A sign along Oklahoma Highway 43 near Sardis Lake.
Logan Layden / StateImpact Oklahoma

Moving water from where it’s plentiful to where it’s needed seems like a logical way to meet all Oklahomans’ future water needs. But water transfers are complicated, and not just because they’re expensive  but because communities with lots of water want to keep it. Nothing illustrates this tension/challenge/whatever better than Sardis Lake.

A bill passed by the state Senate — SB760 — would, among other things, study whether moving water from basin to basin is a viable way of mitigating drought, and started with the idea of moving water from the eastern part of the state to the west. But it’s not the first time people in southeast Oklahoma have faced the prospect of losing the water in their area.

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The Two-Way
10:29 am
Thu April 2, 2015

Indiana, Arkansas Amend 'Religious Freedom' Laws

A sign reading, "This business serves everyone," was placed in the window of Bernadette's Barbershop in downtown Lafayette, Ind., in response to the passage of the state's Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
Nate Chute Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu April 2, 2015 6:23 pm

Updated at 6:21 p.m. ET

Lawmakers in Indiana and Arkansas have approved changes to their respective "religious freedom" measures designed to answer critics who charged the laws were meant to discriminate against gays and lesbians by allowing businesses to refuse them service.

The amendments were passed by Legislatures in Indianapolis and Little Rock after a day of wrestling over the details of amendments to the measures.

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Headlines
8:15 am
Thu April 2, 2015

Headlines: Unskilled Workers, Oil Production & Women in Stand-Up

Headlines for Thursday, April 2, 2015:

  • A new study finds Oklahoma students aren’t getting prepared for high skilled jobs. (NewsOK)

  • Analysts are raising concerns about oil production in 2015. (Journal Record)

  • A bill keeping cities and towns from enacting drilling bans clears a Senate committee. (Tulsa World)

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Politics
6:03 am
Thu April 2, 2015

Fact Check: Hillary Clinton, Those Emails And The Law

Hillary Clinton: "I took the unprecedented step of asking that the State Department make all my work-related emails public for everyone to see."
Marcio Jose Sanchez AP

Originally published on Thu April 2, 2015 8:40 am

The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee — not just a rank-and-file House member — alleged Tuesday that Hillary Clinton likely broke the law with her use of private emails as secretary of state.

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Business
3:59 am
Thu April 2, 2015

When Wal-Mart Comes To Town, What Does It Mean For Workers?

Jessey Drewsen, 25, lives near the H Street Wal-Mart in Washington, D.C. She says she doesn't like the store, but that she goes there for cheap supplies like pens.
Emily Jan NPR

Originally published on Fri April 3, 2015 3:58 pm

This is the second in a two-part story about Wal-Mart. Read and listen to Part 1 here.

One of the biggest objections critics often raise about Wal-Mart is how it treats its workers.

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Business
5:22 pm
Wed April 1, 2015

The Urban Neighborhood Wal-Mart: A Blessing Or A Curse?

The H Street Wal-Mart in Washington, D.C. Ten years ago, none of the city's 600,000 residents lived within 1 mile of a Wal-Mart. Today, almost 13 percent do.
Emily Jan NPR

This is the first in a two-part story about Wal-Mart. Listen to Part 1 above, and tune into Morning Edition Thursday to hear Part 2.

The corner of First and H streets in downtown Washington, D.C., is a reflection of the changing face of the nation's capital. From here, you can see the Capitol dome, while across the street are a concrete public housing complex and a hip new Peruvian chicken restaurant.

You can also see a new Wal-Mart.

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Politics
5:12 pm
Wed April 1, 2015

Indiana's 'Religious Freedom' Law Differs From Other States

Originally published on Wed April 1, 2015 8:00 pm

Nineteen other states have religious freedom laws, and there's even a federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act. NPR's Robert Siegel talks with Garrett Epps, professor of law at the University of Baltimore, who wrote about what separates Indiana's legislation from the others for The Atlantic.

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The Two-Way
4:09 pm
Wed April 1, 2015

California Governor Issues 1st-Ever Statewide Mandatory Water Restrictions

Morning traffic makes its way toward downtown Los Angeles along the Hollywood Freeway, past an electronic sign warning of severe drought. California Gov. Jerry Brown introduced the state's first mandatory water reduction measure this week.
Richard Vogel AP

Originally published on Thu April 2, 2015 11:50 am

Gov. Jerry Brown instituted California's first-ever statewide mandatory water reductions on Wednesday, as the state endures its fourth year of drought.

"This historic drought demands unprecedented action," Brown said, mandating several new conservation measures:

  • A reduction in water use by 25 percent for California cities and towns.
  • New pricing structures by local water agencies to encourage conservation.
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