In The Know: Education linked to post-prison success, mediation ordered for gaming dispute, and more

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

Lawton community forum focuses on helping low income Oklahomans: Together OK and the Oklahoma Policy Institute held a special community forum Monday night to give the community a chance to meet with lawmakers and local leaders. The night’s discussion concerned supporting working class Oklahomans, particularly by making the Earned Income Tax Credit refundable again. [KSWO] A similar event will be held 6 p.m. tonight (Tuesday) in Ardmore. Click here to learn more and RSVP

Past time to support our retired public servants: Retired Oklahoma state and local public servants have now gone 10 years without a cost of living adjustment, while inflation has eaten away at their income. For decades they taught our children, kept our streets safe, guarded prisons, fought fires, and provided essential health and social services. [Paul Shinn / Enid News & Eagle] Check out OK Policy’s information handout on this issue to learn more. 

(Capitol Update) Watching for potential changes to ‘non-economic’ damages: There is an issue flying under the radar that may surface sometime during the Legislative session. This is the placing of a statutory cap on what are called “non-economic” damages in personal injury cases. [Steve Lewis / Capitol Update]

In The News

Oklahoma ill-prepared to help incarcerated people needing education, according to national report: Oklahoma is among 10 states without any of the four building blocks necessary to provide quality postsecondary education opportunities for incarcerated people to reduce recidivism and improve outcomes, according to a national report released Tuesday. [Tulsa World]

Judge orders mediation in compact dispute between Gov. Stitt and Oklahoma’s gaming tribes: An Oklahoma City federal judge has ordered mediation in a compact dispute between Gov. Kevin Stitt and Oklahoma’s gaming tribes. [The Oklahoman] American Indian tribes face “a direct threat to their sovereignty” if they don’t stand up to the Oklahoma state government trying to manipulate its gaming compacts with the tribes, an official with the National Congress of American Indians said Monday. [NonDoc]

Pardon and Parole Board discusses proposal to consolidate agency with Department of Corrections: The executive director of the Pardon and Parole Board said Monday he’s optimistic that combining the agency with the Department of Corrections would be done in a way that would enhance the function and the service level of the board. [The Oklahoman]

Two federal opioid lawsuits go back to Oklahoma, California: A federal judicial panel is sending two federal opioid lawsuits back to federal courts in Oklahoma and California where they were initially filed in an effort to streamline the cases that are among nearly 2,700 now pending in federal court in Ohio. [AP News]

Osborn: Reforming occupational licensing in Oklahoma: Occupational licensure is a requirement to meet various educational and experience measurements to practice a trade or profession within a state. In Oklahoma, the Occupational Licensing Advisory Commission was created to review the occupations that require this standard. [Leslie Osborn / The Journal Record 🔒]

Oklahoma Senate leader: Abortion bill is ‘fatally flawed’: A bill to criminalize abortion in Oklahoma faces unlikely odds in the state Legislature. Despite a change of leadership on a key committee, Sen. Joseph Silk’s “Abolition of Abortion in Oklahoma Act” could stall again this year because of opposition from Senate leadership. [The Oklahoman]

House bill would encourage doctors to move to rural Oklahoma: A new bill introduced by Oklahoma’s House Speaker Charles McCall would increase the number of doctors in rural areas of the state. House Bill 3823 would encourage doctors to take jobs outside of major metropolitan areas by letting them claim a $25,000 tax credit. [FOX25]

Oklahoma House passes bill requiring county jails comply with ICE detainers: The Oklahoma House of Representatives passed a bill Monday requiring county jails to comply with detainer requests from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency. [The Oklahoman]

Solar power advocates call for transparency in billing: The Oklahoma Sierra Club, the Oklahoma Solar Association, solar companies, and others gathered at the Capitol Monday to echo the need for state legislators to prioritize investment in solar energy. [The Journal Record🔒]

State Sen. George Young files legislation to appropriate funds for Clara Luper Civil Rights Center: Oklahoma icon Clara Luper was a civic leader, schoolteacher, and activist best known for orchestrating the 1958 Oklahoma City sit-in protests at downtown drugstore lunch counters, which helped to overturn their racial segregation policies. [CapitolBeatOK]

Oklahoma House Democrats outline legislative priorities: Oklahoma House Democrats rolled out a legislative agenda Monday they say is focused on improving the lives of the state’s working families. [The Oklahoman]

Oklahoma City, Tulsa among unhealthiest cities in U.S.: Oklahoma City and Tulsa are two of the unhealthiest cities in the country, according to a recent study ranking the most and least healthy cities across the United States. The study by personal finance website WalletHub measured 43 metrics in 4 categories — health care, food, fitness and green space — to determine the relative health of 174 of America’s most populous communities. [Enid News & Eagle]

Suspensions vary by race, school in Oklahoma City, officials say: With suspensions on the rise, Oklahoma City Public Schools is examining its student discipline and staff training practices. District officials presented student discipline data to the Oklahoma City School Board during a meeting Monday evening. [The Oklahoman]

Oversight committee also gathering oral histories related to 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre graves: In addition to its work guiding the search for mass graves from the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, a public oversight committee is also working to archive oral histories tied to potential burial sites. [Public Radio Tulsa]

Shifting collective memory in Tulsa: More important than Tulsa’s pop culture moment are the African-American community’s efforts to change the narrative of the massacre that has been ingrained in the city since the last fires of 1921 died out. For almost one hundred years, Tulsa called the events of 1921 a “race riot,” when the city mentioned the event at all. [Russell Cobb / New York Times]

Quote of the Day

“(We) really see providing access to education while a person is incarcerated is in the best interest of public safety, certainly good for local employers, and of course good to help someone get their footing on the path to economic stability when they come back home.”

-Le’Ann Duran, economic mobility director for the Council of State Governments Justice Center [Tulsa World]

Number of the Day

49%

Percent of U.S. workers who expect to be providing care for an aging relative in the coming five years

[Source: AARP]

See previous Numbers of the Day here.

Policy Note

America’s parents want paid family leave and affordable child care. Why can’t they get it? With both parents working in more and more American families, an unprecedented number of women in Congress and support from a Republican president and his daughter, the nation appeared on the cusp of changing all that. But so far, nothing. [USA Today]

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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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