In The Know: 2 injection wells shutting down, 1 reducing activity after earthquakes

In The KnowIn 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.

Today In The News

2 injection wells shutting down, 1 reducing activity after earthquakes: Stephens Production and Devon Energy each voluntarily closed one well, and Stephens reduced operations at another well by 50 percent, Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner Matt Skinner said. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage in the area, although people reported feeling the 4.5 quake as far as 650 miles away in Indiana and Minnesota, according to the USGS [Associated Press].

Job growth shifts away from Oklahoma and other oil patch states: Jobs in construction, education and health, and leisure and hospitality have rebounded broadly over the past year, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data released on Friday. In contrast, combined employment in six states that rank near the top in both oil and gas production – Texas, Louisiana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico and Oklahoma – has now fallen for the past four months [Reuters]. Oklahoma shed a total of 2,100 jobs last month and the unemployment rate climbed to 4.5 percent [Associated Press].

But we’re hiring: OK Policy is seeking an experienced and effective policy analyst to lead our work on economic issues affecting low- and moderate-income Oklahomans [OK Policy Blog]. The full job description and information on how to apply is available here.

OKC hopes consultants can find way to make American Indian Museum work: Although much of the financial background and construction plans provide a framework for City Hall to build on, officials said they expect costly refinements will be needed to account for inflation and the loss of unprotected, unfinished work. As progress now stands, officials estimate two more years to complete construction and about a year to acquire and install the exhibits [Journal Record].

Study finds most workers in tribal gaming industry are non-tribal members: Of the 23,000 jobs directly supported by gaming in 2014, non-tribal citizens held 60 percent of them, according a new economic impact study on the state’s tribal gaming operations. Overall, women account for 54 percent of the state’s casino employees [Tulsa World].

DHS offers amnesty to Oklahomans behind on child support: During August, noncustodial parents in Oklahoma who have outstanding warrants and past-due child-support payments will be able to formulate a payment plan without fear of arrest. The “amnesty in August” is available to 11,684 parents — both men and women — who have fallen behind on child support [Tulsa World].

Bill could eliminate most exemptions for immunizing children: Currently Oklahoma parents can opt their children out of receiving immunizations for medical reasons, religious observance or personal preference and still send them to public or private school. Yet state Sen. Ervin Yen’s bill, filed last session, would strip everything but the medical exemption. Yen filed the bill after a measles outbreak was traced to Disneyland [Journal Record].

Quote of the Day

“Child support is a legal and moral obligation. If the threat of arrest has been a parent’s main obstacle to meeting that obligation, then Amnesty in August is the perfect opportunity for that parent to re-engage in the support of his or her children.”

-Meg Cannon, spokeswoman for the Child Support Services division of the Oklahoma Department of Human Services, speaking about the agency’s plan to allow parents with past-due child-support payments to work out a payment plan during August without fear of arrest (Source).

Number of the Day

36.8 percent

Percentage of veterans in Oklahoma who served during the Vietnam era, compared to 30.7 percent who served since the first Gulf War.

Source: US Census American Community Survey

See previous Numbers of the Day here.

Policy Note

Outrage over EPA emissions regulations fades as states find fixes: Under the Clean Power Plan, states will have to find ways to achieve dramatic cuts in carbon pollution over the next 15 years, with reduction quotas topping 50 percent over 2012 levels for some states. But despite dire warnings and harsh political rhetoric, many states are already on track to meet their targets, even before the EPA formally announces them, interviews and independent studies show [Washington Post]. Oklahoma is already well on its way to meeting the goals set by the Clean Power Plan, and a good faith effort to cooperate by state leaders would not involve great disruptions or cost to the state [OK Policy Blog].

You can sign up here to receive In The Know by e-mail.


Gene Perry worked for OK Policy from 2011 to 2019. He is a native Oklahoman and a citizen of the Cherokee Nation. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a B.A. in history and an M.A. in journalism.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.