In The Know: Grand jury sworn in for investigation of Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office

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

Grand jury sworn in for investigation of Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office: The inquiry is a culmination of a nearly 45-day petition effort by Marq Lewis and We the People Oklahoma. The 12 jurors and 3 alternates will conduct an extensive investigation that could result in Sheriff Stanley Glanz’s ouster from office [Tulsa World].

Committee recommends sales tax hike to build new Oklahoma County jail: A committee that spent seven months studying options for the problem-plagued Oklahoma County jail voted Tuesday to recommend building a new facility. It would be paid for with a county one cent sales tax increase for up to five years [NewsOK].

Governor Fallin executive order gives attorney general new power: Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin has issued an executive order granting the state attorney general’s office expanded authority over proposed actions of numerous state regulatory boards. Board members who reject the attorney general’s advice will be subject to removal for misconduct [NewsOK].

Numbers show north Tulsa crime is lowest in the city: When gang violence makes the news like it has recently in north Tulsa, it might lead some to assume that crime in north Tulsa is high, even the highest in the entire city, but that assumption is wrong. The truth is, north Tulsa’s crime rate is the lowest in the city, and not just this year, but for the past seven years in a row [NewsOn6].

Chesapeake to cancel dividend, sell assets in western Oklahoma: Chesapeake Energy Corp. shares tumbled 9.5 percent after the Oklahoma City oil and natural gas producer announced its plans. Chesapeake said it is seeking to cut costs and decrease financial complexity [NewsOK].

Oklahoma unemployment rate climbs for third straight month: Oklahoma shed a total of 2,100 jobs last month, with more than half of those in the retail-trade sector. Another 900 jobs were lost in the local, state and federal government. The unemployment rate has jumped from 4.3 percent in May to 4.5 percent last month [Claremore Progress].

Survey bolsters arguments for election reform: State Sen. David Holt, R-Oklahoma City, is making it a priority to try to increase voter turnout by reforming the voting system. A U.S. Census Bureau survey that asked registered voters why they didn’t cast ballots in the 2014 midterms may provide further ammunition for his pursuit. The No. 1 answer: too busy [NewsOK]. An OK Policy report shares ideas for how to increase voter knowledge and participation while giving Oklahomans more choices on the ballot [OK Policy].

Quote of the Day

“It’s not unreasonable to be too busy or uninterested when it takes 3 elections (2 of which are exclusive) to fill 1 office. It takes an almost superhuman level of interest to properly participate in our current Byzantine system.”

-State Senator David Holt, R-OKC, speaking about Oklahoma’s system of primaries and run-off elections. He has proposed moving to a single ‘top-two’ primary with candidates from all parties and vote-by-mail elections to boost Oklahoma’s very low voter turnout (Source).

Number of the Day


Percentage of low-income, uninsured Oklahomans with a serious mental illness or substance abuse condition, for a total of 47,261 Oklahomans.

Source: U.S. Government Accountability Office

See previous Numbers of the Day here.

Policy Note

Medicaid expansion is producing large gains in health coverage and saving states money: Hospitals in expansion states are treating fewer uninsured patients, and the amount of uncompensated care they are providing is declining steeply. Moreover, contrary to critics’ claims that Medicaid expansion is financially unsustainable for states, there is increasing evidence that expansion has saved states money, and these savings are expected to grow over time [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities].

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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.

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