In The Know is your daily briefing on Oklahoma policy-related news. Inclusion of a story does not necessarily mean endorsement by the Oklahoma Policy Institute. Click here to subscribe to In The Know and see past editions.
New from OK Policy
Funding postsecondary education for incarcerated Oklahomans could pay off for public safety and the budget: Nearly 27,000 individuals are in Department of Corrections (DOC) custody, and approximately 90 percent will eventually be released. For justice reform to be successful in the long-term, we must prepare those currently incarcerated for meaningful re-entry back into our communities. [OK Policy]
Prosperity Policy: State Question 780 is working: Two years ago, Oklahomans endorsed a new approach to non-violent criminal offenses. State Question 780 reclassified simple drug possession and many minor property crimes as misdemeanors rather than felonies. No longer would individuals convicted of these offenses be facing long prison sentences and felony records. [David Blatt / Journal Record]
In The News
Proposed bill would eliminate Medicaid program for low-income pregnant women: A bill proposed by a Republican lawmaker from Duncan would eliminate a state Medicaid program that provides health care services to low-income pregnant women. Senate Bill 40, authored by Sen. Paul Scott, R-Duncan, would eliminate the state’s Soon-to-Be-Sooners program, which is part of Oklahoma’s Medicaid program, known as SoonerCare. [The Frontier]
Teacher raises helped improve per-pupil spending gap, but Oklahoma still trails its neighbors: The latest national comparison of per-student spending rates in public schools shows that Oklahoma still trails all neighboring states, even when factoring in this year’s infusion of new dollars for teacher pay raises. According to the just-released National Center for Education Statistics annual report, Oklahoma’s annual expenditures trailed the regional average by nearly $1.3 billion for the 2015-16 academic year, the most recent data analyzed. [Tulsa World]
Continue Reading »