In The Know: $270M opioid settlement; splitting OMES; redirecting TSET funds…

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.

New from OK Policy

Join us at Public Radio Tulsa’s Give and Take: We are excited to be joining the Oklahoma Health Care Authority and Morton Comprehensive Health Services at Public Radio Tulsa’s Give & Take panel on Medicaid Expansion, The Oklahoma Plan, and SB 605, moderated by Matt Trotter. Join us at the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma today at 6 PM

In The News

Oklahoma reaches $270 million settlement with Purdue and Sacklers in opioid lawsuit: Purdue Pharma LP, the maker of OxyContin, and its owners, the Sacklers, will pay Oklahoma $270 million in a settlement agreement to resolve its claims with the state, with the bulk of that money going to a program for addiction research and treatment, the state’s attorney general announced Tuesday. [The Frontier] Tulsa’s OSU Center for Health Sciences could become national leader in addiction research with $270 million Purdue Pharma settlement. [Tulsa World

Bill to split OMES IT advances in Legislature: A small panel of lawmakers on Monday narrowly agreed the state Office of Management and Enterprise Services should be split in two, with the Information Technology services division having its own agency. If adopted into law, Senate Bill 227 would create the Oklahoma Information Services Department and pay between $130,000 and $160,000 to the person selected to be chief information officer and executive director. [NewsOK]

Legislation would redirect TSET funds to rural hospitals: Passage of House Joint Resolution 1017, authored by state Rep. John Pfeiffer, R-Orlando, would set the stage for Oklahomans to decide whether millions of dollars that currently flow into the state annually as a result of a settled lawsuit involving tobacco companies should be redirected from the state’s Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust, or TSET. [Journal Record ????]

District attorney hangs marijuana trafficking case on testing that college says hasn’t been completed on hemp shipment: Osage County District Attorney Mike Fisher cited a complete set of test results as reason to keep prosecuting two hemp security officers for marijuana trafficking, but the college performing the analyses says it isn’t finished. [Tulsa World]

Most in area think minimum wage should be raised: The minimum wage in Oklahoma sits at $7.25 per hour, and it doesn’t appear to be changing anytime soon. But that hasn’t stopped legislators from trying almost every session. A few measures to alter the state’s minimum wage were killed by the Legislature earlier this month. [Tahlequah Daily Press]

Bill to keep info. of undercover Okla. officers off public records advances: A bill to keep the information of undercover police officers off county assessors’ public records advances in a House of Representatives Committee. But opponents question whether it will create a separate class of people not subject to Open Records laws. [News9]

Bill creates statewide aerospace training facility in Oklahoma: A measure heads to the House Appropriations and Budget Education Committee on Tuesday, proposing to build a statewide aerospace training facility in Oklahoma. [KJRH]

In OKC, CDC director says America can end AIDS epidemic: America can end the AIDS epidemic in 10 years, but it will take a lot of people willing to do the hard work, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday during a tour of the HIV clinic at OU Medical Center. [NewsOK]

Promises made to fix Oklahoma City’s out-of-order streetlights: Oklahoma City officials on Tuesday promised progress by summer on out-of-order streetlights, addressing an infrastructure problem and a growing political problem for the city council and mayor. [NewsOK]

AICCM management clarified with lease agreement: City officials signed a 50-year lease agreement for the management of the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum on Tuesday. The not-for-profit foundation overseeing the center’s completion is already in the process of obtaining New Markets Tax Credits that can be used toward bringing the AICCM up to world-class standards, according to Economic Development Project Manager Brent Bryant. [Journal Record]

Tulsa teachers discuss next advocacy steps for education funding at public meeting: Almost a year after Oklahoma’s two-week teacher walkout, many Tulsa educators are again ready to step up their advocacy efforts in the longstanding fight for more education funding. [Tulsa World]

OU graduate alleges sexual battery by David Boren, Tripp Hall: On a November afternoon in 2010, then-University of Oklahoma President David Boren’s red Jaguar pulled up to the Spirit Shop in Norman. Boren handed a $100 bill to Jess Eddy, his 21-year-old teaching assistant. “Get something for yourself,” Eddy recalls Boren telling him. [NonDoc] OU issues a new statement on investigation after graduate speaks out. [NewsOK]

Joe Exotic trial begins with accounts of murder-for hire plot, shooting sedated tigers: Joseph “Joe Exotic” Maldonado-Passage illegally sold lion cubs, callously shot surplus tigers to free up cage space at his zoo and ultimately sought the ultimate revenge on a Florida woman he blamed for all his money and legal problems, assistant U.S. Attorney Charles Brown told jurors Monday. [The Frontier] Joe Exotic’s jury shown his online death threats. [NewsOK]

Ethics body questions ex-EPA chief’s $50-a-night condo deal: The U.S. Office of Government Ethics is refusing to certify one of the final financial disclosure reports of ex-Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt, citing the cut-rate $50-a-night deal Pruitt had for a luxury Washington condo. [AP News]

Quote of the Day

“Putting more [money] in the hand of the working poor stimulates the entire economy from the bottom up. People who say small businesses will suffer are wrong. Increased purchasing power of their own workers and all other workers will actually result in a much more prosperous environment in which their small business will benefit disproportionately.”

-Feral Glass, responding to a survey by the Tahlequah Daily Press that found most respondents saying Oklahoma should increase the minimum wage [Source: Tahlequah Daily Press]

Number of the Day


Share of students in Oklahoma City Public Schools enrolled in SoonerCare (Medicaid), 2012-2016

[Source: Georgetown Center for Children and Families]

See previous Numbers of the Day here.

Policy Note

Schools Find a New Way to Combat Student Absences: Washing Machines: Sometimes the solution to improving student attendance can be as simple as offering an alarm clock, a bus token or a free breakfast. For schools in Kentucky, Missouri, New Jersey, Colorado and elsewhere across the country, especially those serving low-income populations, the answer is a washing machine. [New York Times]

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Jessica joined OK Policy as a Communications Associate in January 2018. A Mexican immigrant, she was a Clara Luper Scholar at Oklahoma City University where she obtained a B.A. in Political Science and Philosophy. Prior to joining OK Policy, Jessica worked at a digital marketing agency in Oklahoma City. She is an alumna of both the National Education for Women (N.E.W.) Leadership Institute (2013) and OK Policy's Summer Policy Institute (2015). In addition to her role at OK Policy, Jessica serves as a board member for Dream Action Oklahoma in OKC and communications director for Dream Alliance Oklahoma in Tulsa.

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