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Today In The News
CEO Nico Gomez to resign from Oklahoma Health Care Authority: Oklahoma Health Care Authority CEO Nico Gomez announced his impending resignation Monday afternoon in a press release. The release notes his final day will be Sept. 30. Gomez assumed the CEO’s position from Mike Fogarty, who retired in 2013. He had previously served as the agency’s legislative liaison, and in the past three years he worked closely with legislative leaders and Gov. Mary Fallin’s office to navigate the state’s tight budget situation [NonDoc].
The New Scourge of Meth: The methamphetamine scourge is spreading again in Oklahoma, with fatal overdoses from the drug spiking last year, according to numbers from the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs. Meth was a factor in 265 deaths in 2015, or nearly a third of all fatal overdoses. The total represented a 157 percent increase since 2010, when 103 deaths were attributed solely or partly to meth [Oklahoma Watch].
Medical marijuana petition unlikely to make November ballot: A petition to legalize medical marijuana in Oklahoma is unlikely to go before voters in November because advocates say they will challenge the attorney general’s rewording of the ballot title — a legal process certain to push the measure beyond the general election. But state officials say it’ll be delayed because supporters of State Question 788 didn’t submit the required 65,987 voter signatures to qualify with enough buffer time for legal challenges and for the state’s Election Board to print and send ballots to counties, military members and overseas voters [Associated Press]. SQ 792 will be the only alcohol question on November ballot after a competing measure that would phase in strong beer and wine sales at grocery stores missed its signature gathering deadline [NewsOK]. Read about the State Questions that will be on the ballot [OK Policy].