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.
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Today you should know that more funds for education is the top priority on this year’s legislative agenda for the Tulsa Chamber of Commerce. In the past five years, the percentage of incarcerated Oklahomans diagnosed with mental illness has nearly doubled, reaching more than one-third of all inmates. On StudioTulsa, OK Policy Executive Director David Blatt gave a detailed preview of the legislative session that begins today. OETA will live-stream Governor Fallin’s State of the State address today beginning at 12:30 pm.
The Legislature spent $5.2 million to renovate their conference rooms and offices at the state Capitol while the building’s exterior continues to crumble. Several bills have been filed this session to reform Oklahoma’s liquor laws. A number of bills seek to expand where Oklahomans can carry handguns, including in schools, on public transit, and at public meetings. The Tulsa World shared a sampling of odd legislation filed this year in Oklahoma.
On the OK Policy Blog, Jia Wang shares research showing that increased government spending on business incentives appears to be undercutting funding for public services, and this trade-off actually harms economic growth. The okeducationtruths blog assessed the latest changes in Oklahoma’s A-F grading system. With propane costs at a record high, Governor Fallin ordered the Oklahoma Department of Human Services to expedite applications for a federal assistance program that helps low-income families with heating costs.
As of 2011, Oklahoma ranked seventh in the nation in its reliance on federal funding to supplement state revenue. Julie Delcour discussed how conservatives and liberals are sending the same message about the need to reduce incarceration. The Oklahoman editorial board hoped that lawmakers will avoid ideological posturing and unconstitutional bills this year.
The Number of the Day is the portion of each dollar the state of Oklahoma spent in FY 2011 that came from federal funds. In today’s Policy Note, New York Magazine discusses how President Obama’s “MyRA” proposal could solve two big problems with retirement saving.
continue reading In The Know: Education funding tops Tulsa Chamber’s agenda