Headlines for Monday, February 19, 2018:

  • Two more Oklahoma City schools face threats today. (NewsOK)

  • A new study ranks Oklahoma third worst in structurally deficient bridges. (CNHI)

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Environmental groups and concerned residents this week told federal officials the Oklahoma agency charged with protecting air, land and water lacked the resources and rules to manage a state-run plan to regulate coal ash.

Flu Deaths Climb To Record High in Oklahoma

Feb 16, 2018
Flickr / WFIU

Oklahoma has set a state record for flu deaths. So far 153 people have died during the 2017-18 flu season, which breaks a record from last year. The Oklahoma State Department of Health began tracking flu deaths per season in 2009.

Health Officials say the H3N3 virus or Flu A has been particularly harmful to those 65 and older and those younger than five years old. And, the Flu B strain is increasingly worrying health authorities.

Health Department spokesperson, Tony Sellars, says Oklahomans still need to get vaccinated.

Headlines for Friday, February 16, 2018:

  • Bills to cut agencies and fill a revenue shortfall moves through the legislative process. (Tulsa World)

  • Democrats & Auditor release a plan for revenue. (Journal Record)

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 failure by the state legislature to pass the Step Up Oklahoma plan on Monday, Interim Health Commissioner Preston Doerflinger stepping down after news surfaced of domestic abuse and Oklahoma City State Senator David Holt easily wins the election for mayor to replace Mick Cornett.

Quinton Chandler / StateImpact Oklahoma

More than 30 people sit uncomfortably on hard, wooden benches under the watchful eyes of Judge Tim Henderson. It’s late morning in Henderson’s courtroom at the Oklahoma County courthouse. Some people have been waiting for hours.

Most of these people are on probation, and they’re anxiously waiting for their chance to make a deal. Judge Henderson says these people broke their plea agreements.


Kate Carlton Greer / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

The Oklahoma Department of Corrections has stopped hiring for the rest of the budget year to prepare for potential funding cuts.

Corrections Director Joe Allbaugh decided to freeze hiring after the state Legislature voted down a series of tax increases known as the Step Up Oklahoma plan, Monday.

Photos by Mike Morgan and Sandy Honig

Starting soon Ailsa Chang will host All Things Considered along with Audie Cornish, Mary Louise Kelly and Ari Shapiro; and Noel King will join David Greene, Steve Inskeep and Rachel Martin as the fourth host of Morning Edition and the Up First podcast.

Headlines for Thursday, February 15, 2018:

  • Revenue collections for January come in $122M more than estimates. (NewsOK)

  • Doerflinger’s resignation impacts the Health Department. (Journal Record)

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

A group wanting to raise gross production taxes is gearing up after the failure of Step Up Oklahoma.

Restore Oklahoma Now is proposing State Question 795 to raise GPT to 7% which will bring in an extra $288 million with most of that going to common education.

Executive Director Mickey Thompson says he delayed pushing forward while Step Up Oklahoma worked its way through the State Capitol.