All articles by Kate Richey

Upcoming Event: Who Pays More? A Town Hall Forum on Predatory Lending in Oklahoma

by | February 10th, 2015 | Posted in Blog, Poverty & Opportunity | Comments (0)

Oklahoma Assets Network (OAN) is pleased to invite you to save the date for a town hall forum on predatory lending. This event is free and open to the public.

pasted-image-17The forum will feature remarks from Dr. Haydar Kurban, the author of new research on payday lending patterns in the state, ‘The Demographics of Payday Lending in Oklahoma.‘ Dr. Kurban is an Associate Professor of Economics at Howard University whose previous research has been published in the National Tax Journal and Economic Development Quarterly.

Wednesday March 4th, 2015
6:30pm Heavy hors d’oeuvres
7:00-8:30pm Remarks & discussion

OU Faculty House
601 Northeast 14th Street
Oklahoma City, OK 73104

Please RSVP to Kate Richey at
(918) 794-3944 or krichey@okpolicy.org

Please join Dr. Kurban and our local panel of experts for a discussion about the disproportionate share of predatory lenders located among particular communities and demographics, including:

  • Military families
  • Older Oklahomans
  • Lower income earners
  • Single parent households
  • Young adults
  • Communities of color

 

 

 

Following Dr. Kurban’s remarks, we will take questions and comments from the audience, and host a discussion featuring local experts and practitioners: 

  • [Moderator] Damario Solomon-Simmons, Legislative Liaison with Oklahoma Policy Institute 
  • David Blatt, Director of Oklahoma Policy Institute
  • Kate Richey, Coordinator for Oklahoma Assets Network
  • Cristy Cash, Vice President of Central Oklahoma Consumer Credit Counseling 
  • Tina Pollard, Consumer Lending Manager with Citizen Potawatomi Community Development Corporation

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New opportunity scorecard shows Oklahomans slipping financially

by | January 29th, 2015 | Posted in Poverty & Opportunity | Comments (0)

pasted-image-small-17Conventional wisdom may seem to suggest that the economy has bounced back. Low unemployment and a stable housing market paint the picture of a prosperous Oklahoma. But if you look at the pocketbooks of the average American, the outlook is far from rosy. As CFED’s newly released 2015 Assets & Opportunity Scorecard reveals, the economy may be improving, but how individuals and families are faring in the economy is not.

The Scorecard data confirm what most families have known for a while—that even those squarely in the middle class are living on the brink of financial disaster. In fact, 49.1 percent of Oklahoma households are ‘liquid asset poor’, meaning they lack the resources necessary to subsist at the poverty level in the event that a job loss or medical emergency leaves them without their primary source of income. The high liquid asset poverty rate is perhaps unsurprising given the other patterns we see emerge from the Scorecard data. 

continue reading New opportunity scorecard shows Oklahomans slipping financially

In The Know: State Rep. Kern files handful of anti-gay proposals

by | January 23rd, 2015 | Posted in In The Know | Comments (0)

In The KnowIn The Know is a daily synopsis of Oklahoma policy-related news and blogs. Inclusion of a story does not necessarily mean endorsement by the Oklahoma Policy Institute. You can sign up here to receive In The Know by e-mail.

State Rep. Sally Kern filed three anti-gay bills, including one to allow businesses to refuse service “to any lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender person, group or association.” A new report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows Oklahoma women earn some of the lowest wages in the country.

The widow of a man killed by three Moore police officers and two off-duty game wardens in the parking lot of a movie theater filed a lawsuit alleging unreasonable force; Rodriguez had not committed any crime, didn’t attempt to resist or evade arrest and didn’t have a criminal record.

A proposal to ban oil and natural gas drilling in some parts of Stillwater was rejected by the city council. Gov. Mary Fallin announced Oklahoma’s new secretary of education and workforce development.

The OK Policy Blog discusses Governor Fallin’s goal of boosting educational attainment – and President Obama’s new plan to make that happen. The Number of the Day is the percentage of women incarcerated in Oklahoma who ran away from home before age 18. In today’s Policy Note, PolicyLink published new research to inform the debate about racial equity and the future of the American economy. 

continue reading In The Know: State Rep. Kern files handful of anti-gay proposals

In The Know: State Rep. proposes barring marriage licenses for same-sex couples

by | January 22nd, 2015 | Posted in In The Know | Comments (0)

In The KnowIn The Know is a daily synopsis of Oklahoma policy-related news and blogs. Inclusion of a story does not necessarily mean endorsement by the Oklahoma Policy Institute. You can sign up here to receive In The Know by e-mail.

Today you should know that State Rep. Todd Russ proposes barring court clerks from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Senate President Pro Tem Brian Bingman says Oklahoma teachers are underpaid.

Attorney General Scott Pruitt is accused of harassment and misconduct in a suit filed by the Humane Society, alleging a campaign of harassment of the organization at the behest of the Oklahoma Farm Bureau. Authorities are quietly scrutinizing wells in earthquake-prone parts of the state.

Sen. Jim Inhofe supports an amendment declaring that climate change is real and not a hoax, but maintains that, “the hoax is that there are some people who are so arrogant to think they are so powerful they can change climate.” The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs began presenting its case against a Sequoyah County doctor who it says was overprescribing controlled substances at his clinics. 

The OK Policy Blog writes about the three biggest barriers that block Oklahomans with a felony record from putting their lives back together. The Number of the Day is the percentage of children receiving the full series of childhood vaccinations in Oklahoma. In today’s Policy Note, Howard University’s Center on Race and Wealth reports on how predatory lenders drain income and wealth from economically vulnerable communities.

continue reading In The Know: State Rep. proposes barring marriage licenses for same-sex couples

New & Improved: Detailed, interactive county-level data tables

by | January 13th, 2015 | Posted in Blog | Comments (1)

INSURANCEPICToday Oklahoma Policy Institute published detailed county-level tables on 12 key social and economic indicators, now including time series data. The new tables on our State & County Data resource page cover topics such as:

  • Population and income
  • Poverty and free school lunch
  • Employment in state and local government
  • Labor force participation and unemployment
  • Insurance, disability, obesity and smoking

continue reading New & Improved: Detailed, interactive county-level data tables

In The Know: Lower oil prices predicted to fuel hiring nationally

by | January 9th, 2015 | Posted in Blog, In The Know | Comments (0)

In The KnowIn The Know is a daily synopsis of Oklahoma policy-related news and blogs. Inclusion of a story does not necessarily mean endorsement by the Oklahoma Policy Institute. You can sign up here to receive In The Know by e-mail.

Today you should know that analysts predict the U.S. economy will add 300,000 more jobs this year if oil stays near its current price than if the price had remained at its June level. Oil producers are bailing out of long-term contracts for drilling rigs as crude prices fall.

Organizers of an education rally planned for March 30th say they’re expecting 50,000 people to turn up at the Capitol. Oklahoma State Rep. John Bennett renewed his attacks on Oklahoma Muslims and questioned the state chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations’ sincerity in condemning the recent Paris attack.

The U.S. Geological Survey says Oklahoma had more earthquakes last year than in the past 30 years. Representatives from Iowa Pacific shared their plan for passenger rail between Tulsa and Oklahoma City with Tulsa city councilors.

In today’s Policy Note, a new analysis from Pew Research Center finds that financially insecure Americans are far less likely to vote or be politically engaged in other ways. The Number of the Day is the number of Oklahomans who selected plans on Healthcare.gov during the open enrollment period in 2014.

continue reading In The Know: Lower oil prices predicted to fuel hiring nationally

The ‘work requirement’ that wasn’t

by | December 17th, 2014 | Posted in Blog, Poverty, Poverty & Opportunity | Comments (1)

Welfare as it exists in the minds of many Americans bears little resemblance to welfare as it exists in reality. The nation’s ‘welfare’ cash assistance program was functionally dismantled in the mid-1990s, but especially in Oklahoma, leaders still lean heavily on the specter of nanny state budget bloat and the work-shy freeloader. Even some twenty years after welfare was gutted, most voters either don’t know that the program was essentially eliminated or they have long since forgotten. This has made it easy for ambitious politicians to campaign on an ‘anti-welfare’ agenda while their actual proposals receive little scrutiny.

STATE OF THE STATEOklahoma legislators recently targeted a nutrition assistance program called SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), formerly food stamps, citing a disdain for ‘welfare’ and a commitment to the value of hard work. Oklahoma’s former House Speaker T.W. Shannon introduced HB 1909 in 2013 with a familiar refrain:

continue reading The ‘work requirement’ that wasn’t

Upcoming Event: ‘Closing the gap’ & Alliance for Economic Inclusion

by | December 2nd, 2014 | Posted in Upcoming Events | Comments (1)

Photo_Kate RicheyThe Alliance for Economic Inclusion for Northeastern Oklahoma (“NEOK AEI”) will host their quarterly meeting this Thursday, December 4th. Kate Richey, who works for Oklahoma Policy Institute as project coordinator for Oklahoma Assets Network will present her research, ‘Closing the Opportunity Gap: Building Equity in Oklahoma.‘ This research outlines an equity agenda for Oklahoma’s future, one that acknowledges the racial wealth gap and income inequality as products of our collective history, culture, and public policies:

Oklahoma’s prosperity depends on the financial success and economic achievement of the people who call it home. For a state that has always been rich in natural resources and entrepreneurial spirit, the future continues to look bright. Yet we’ve also inherited a legacy of discrimination that historically impeded economic opportunity for people of color and created a wealth deficit that persists today. Left unaddressed, this wealth deficit threatens Oklahoma’s ability to achieve shared prosperity into the
future.

aeiThe NEOK AEI partnership seeks to improve the financial capability of low- to moderate-income consumers and is comprised of community based organizations, financial institutions, foundations, employers, faith-based organizations, tribal, state and local governmental agencies, bank regulators, and public officials. The NEOK AEI, launched in October 2012, has over 150 members representing 97 organizations. 

The meeting is free and open to the public and will be held from 6:00 to 8:00pm at 221 E Mathew B Brady St in Tulsa Oklahoma.

Better know Oklahoma with CountySTATs 2014

by | November 18th, 2014 | Posted in Blog, OK Policy | Comments (2)

Oklahoma Policy Institute is pleased to release a new and improved tool for learning about Oklahoma’s counties and residents. CountySTATS 2014 covers demographics, the economy, education, and health. The factsheets display statistics for each of the state’s 77 counties, incorporating:

  •  Key local statistics at-a-glance
  • Complicated information with colorful graphics 
  • Tools for quick comparisons along a range of indicators

Find out the percentage of residents who rely on social security disability or which industries employ the most people. Learn how a county’s overall health compares to the rest of the state. The colorful, two-page factsheets feature over 20 key indicators to provide a snapshot of your county.

 

What a profitable Postal Service looks like (Part Two)

by | November 11th, 2014 | Posted in Blog, Poverty & Opportunity | Comments (0)
Postal Trucks

Photo by Ron Doke.

We already know from Part One in this series that the United States Postal Service (USPS) has a long history and excellent record of administering financial services, which up until now has been limited to savings products. But a new report from the Office of the Inspector General at USPS makes a convincing argument that your local post office is actually well-suited to offer a suite of financial products and services, not just savings bonds and accounts.

Table 1 below details the potential services that are feasible using existing postal service infrastructure, but it is not exhaustive. In addition to transactional services like bill payment and check cashing, USPS could partner with banks and credit unions to offer affordable credit options, like small dollar alternatives to payday loans.

continue reading What a profitable Postal Service looks like (Part Two)

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