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What's That?

Key terms to understand Oklahoma politics and government.

The emergency clause is a provision included as part of a bill in the Oklahoma  Legislature that allows it to become effective immediately upon the signature of the Governor or at a specified date. Emergency clauses require two-thirds approval by… Read more
To receive a high school diploma in Oklahoma, students must score Proficient or Advanced on four out of seven End-of-Instructions Tests (EOIs). The tests cover the subject matters of Algebra I, English II, Algebra II, Biology I, English III, Geometry,… Read more
A bill that passes out of one chamber is engrossed, and then sent to the other chamber. If the bill passes the second chamber but not in its final form (e.g. it has been amended or has had its title… Read more
The Every Students Succeeds Act (ESSA) is a federal law that governs K-12 public education. ESSA reauthorizes and amends the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 and replaces the No Child Left Behind Act. It was signed into law… Read more
The federal poverty level (FPL) is a measure of income issued annually by the Department of Health and Human Services that is used to determine eligibility for various public programs and benefits, including Medicaid, health insurance premium tax credits, the… Read more
A fiscal year (usually abbreviated ‘FY’) is the period used for calculating annual budgets. The state of Oklahoma’s fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30. Each fiscal year is named after the calendar year that it ends in.… Read more
Food security is defined as “ready availability of nutritionally adequate and safe foods.” The measure was introduced by the U.S. Census Bureau in 1996 to assess households’ ability to consistently obtain three nutritionally adequate meals a day. Households can be… Read more
Federally-qualified health centers (FQHCs) are community health centers that meet certain qualifications and are thus eligible for certain grants. FQHCs must serve an underserved area or population, offer a sliding fee scale, provide comprehensive services, have an ongoing quality assurance… Read more
Oklahoma levies a franchise tax on all corporations or associations doing business in the state. Corporations are taxed $1.25 for each $1,000 of capital invested or otherwise used in Oklahoma up to a maximum levy of $20,000 (foreign corporations are… Read more
The General Appropriations (GA) bill is an annual bill approved by the legislature that funds the ongoing operations of state agencies for the next budget year. The GA bill has two features that distinguish it from other legislation: (1) It… Read more