In 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.
Superintendent-Elect Joy Hofmeister announced on Thursday that she had selected a group of Oklahomans to advise her as she transitions into her new role as Superintendent of Public Instruction. The state Regents for Higher Education, which oversees Oklahoma’s 25 colleges and universities, is asking for nearly $100 million in additional funding for the next fiscal year, bringing their total requested appropriation to more than $1 billion. Oklahoma’s preterm birth rate has dropped, but still remains well above targets, prompting the March of Dimes Premature Birth Report Card to award the state a ‘C’ grade.
The Tulsa World argued that recent drops in oil prices are bad for Oklahoma because so much of the state’s economy relies on the industry. In his Journal Record column, Oklahoma Observer editor Arnold Hamilton suggested three takeaways from the recent elections. The Tulsa World’s Editorial Board praised new transparency laws that went into effect on Saturday. The state received $1 million in federal Affordable Care Act funds to help establish or expand behavioral health services for almost 3,000 people. State health officials say that at least 14 people have been diagnosed with the flu in Oklahoma since late September. We’ve written about why everyone should get a flu shot before.
A spate of domestic violence-related homicides in Tulsa this summer has prompted plans for a summit on the issue in early 2015. A blog post on the New York Times’ editorial blog praised the state Supreme Court for blocking two laws would have closed all but one of the state’s abortion providers. The state Supreme Court has elected John Reif to serve as the Court’s new chief justice, replacing Chief Justice Tom Colbert, who will rotate out of the position.
The Chickasaw Nation is partnering with a tech start-up that’s developing an app to help women on WIC determine which grocery items are WIC-eligible and where they can be purchased. The Number of the Day is the number of obstetricians and gynecologists working in Oklahoma in 2013. In today’s Policy Note, Vox examines the plight of workers trapped in forced labor in the US.