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Oklahoma to Delay Any Executions Until at Least Next Year

Posted by Bob Sands on

Oklahoma and attorneys for death row inmates are asking a federal court to suspend ongoing challenges to the states lethal injection law. The action was taken as the state agrees not to seek any execution dates until at least next year.

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Study Shows Oil and Gas Related Earthquakes Go Back Decades

Posted by Bob Sands on

Researchers for the U.S. Geological Survey have found that most of the strong earthquakes in Oklahoma history were probably caused by the oil and gas industry. That includes two high-profile Oklahoma earthquakes in the 1950's, a 5.7 magnitude temblor in El Reno and a 3.9 magnitude quake in Tulsa county.

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Chesapeake Energy Fined for Under Reporting on Indian Leases

Posted by Bob Sands on

Chesapeake Energy Corp. is now facing a $2.1 million fine from the Department of Interior's Office of Natural Resources Revenue Office in Denver. The company was fined for failing to comply with an order in 2011 to review the amounts of natural gas produced on more than 100 leases on Indian lands.

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State Supreme Court Rules in Same-Sex Parenting Rights Case

Posted by Bob Sands on

The Oklahoma Supreme Court has ruled that an Oklahoma County District Court Judge got the case wrong when he dismissed a lawsuit over same-sex parental rights. Judge Howard Haralson ruled that the non-biological parent lacked legal standing. The states highest court held that the biological mother can't just erase a parental relationship she voluntarily created.

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Lawmaker Wants to Replace Income Tax with a Service Tax

Posted by Bob Sands on

Every time you purchase a service, haircut, doctors visit, hire an attorney, etc. you'd pay a tax. That's the idea of state Representative Mark McCullough of Sapulpa. The service tax was the topic of an interim study. Rep. McCullough says a tax on transactions would be a more reliable revenue stream than corporate or individual income taxes.

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New Anti-Abortion Law Put on Hold

Posted by Bob Sands on

One new anti-abortion law was temporarily blocked by an Oklahoma County Judge today but another was not. Judge Patricia Parrish issued the split ruling that will likely be appealed and end up before the Oklahoma Supreme Court. The law put on hold would ban second-trimester abortions. The other law extends the waiting period for a woman seeking an abortion.

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Challenge of New Anti-Abortion Law Heard in Court

Posted by Bob Sands on

Oral arguments have concluded before the Oklahoma Supreme Court over the latest challenge to another anti-abortion law passed by the legislature and signed by the Governor. The challenge focuses on a claim that the bill violates the single subject rule of the state constitution. Senate Bill 642 has four separate provisions.

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High Fire Danger

Posted by Bob Sands on

The risk of wildfires is very high this week. Windy weather, low humidity and warm temperatures coupled with a lack of rain means parts of the state are very fire prone.

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Earthquake Swarms Return

Posted by Bob Sands on

11 earthquakes struck parts of Oklahoma over the weekend. Nine of the quakes, ranging in magnitude from 2.5 to 3.7 occurred over a 12 hour period from Saturday afternoon through early Sunday morning, all in northern Oklahoma. Two more temblors happened on Saturday near Cushing and Medford, the first 4.5 and the second 4.4.

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State Used Wrong Drug in Last Execution

Posted by Bob Sands on

As all executions are on hold in Oklahoma because of issues involving the drugs that are used, it's been learned that the state used the wrong drug in it's last execution. The drug potassium acetate was used to execute Charles Warner when state policy calls for the use of potassium chloride. The same drug mix-up prompted the state to stay all executions pending an investigation.

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Women Leading Oklahoma Republican Party

Posted by Bob Sands on

The Oklahoma Republican Party has chosen Pam Pollard as their Chairwoman. The party's Vice Chairman is also a woman, Estela Hernandez had sought the top spot.

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Income for State Government Continues to Slide

Posted by Bob Sands on

Overall revenue collections for state government last month continued their downward trend. For the first time in five years, gross receipts to the treasurer for the last 12 month period were below income for the same 12 months a year ago. Treasurer Ken Miller also expressed growing concern of a state revenue failure during the current fiscal year which would trigger immediate budget cuts.

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10 Commandment Bill Going Unpaid

Posted by Bob Sands on

The bill for construction of the second 10 Commandments monument that used to reside at the state capitol remains unpaid. Wilbert Memorials says it fronted the cost of building the second granite monument after the first one was destroyed. State Rep. Mike Ritze raised money to pay for the first monument and promised to do the same for the second.

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AG Pruitt Steps Into Prayer and Sports at Public Schools

Posted by Bob Sands on

In a formal legal opinion Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt says a new policy prohibiting public prayer at playoff events is overly broad. The policy was put in place by the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association.

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Halliburton Offering Deals to Settle Pollution Suit

Posted by Bob Sands on

Halliburton is moving to settle up with as many people as possible over lawsuits involving the companies acknowledged pollution of water wells in Duncan. The pollution involved ammonium perchlorate which was from spent rocket fuel the company burned in open pits for decades. 83 people who sued the company have so far agreed to the deal.

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