In The Know: Medicaid petition meets signature goal, Disagreements leave criminal justice reform in limbo, Survey by parent group defines Top 10 schools

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.

In The News

Medicaid petition meets goal of 178,000 signatures, campaign says: Supporters of Medicaid expansion say they have collected the required number of signatures to put a state question on the ballot next year. Nearly two weeks shy of the Oct. 28 deadline, the Yes on 802 campaign has collected the 178,000 signatures required by state law, campaign manager Amber England announced Thursday evening on a conference call for the campaign’s volunteers. [The OklahomanOK Policy has endorsed SQ 802 – here’s why

Legislator questions ‘loyalty’ of state regent aiding opioid appeal: An Oklahoma State Regent for Higher Education came under fire Thursday for representing opioid manufacturer Johnson & Johnson in its appeal against an Oklahoma judge’s ruling that the company helped fuel Oklahoma’s opioid crisis. [The Oklahoman]

Disagreements leave new Oklahoma criminal justice program in limbo: Some parts of criminal justice reform can feel risky. If you propose letting someone out of jail who has committed a crime, you reduce jail overcrowding, but does it put the community at risk? That’s a question Rogers County in northeastern Oklahoma has been trying to answer. [StateImpact OklahomaHow long you spend in jail before your trial often depends on which county you’re in.

State hosts transition fair for inmates eligible for special commutations under retroactive SQ780: With hundreds of inmates eligible for special commutations now that the drug and property crimes that sent them to prison are misdemeanors, Oklahoma is trying something new. [Public Radio Tulsa]

Oklahoma County Jail Trust to discuss jail administrator applications Oct. 18: The application period for the Oklahoma County jail administrator position is now closed. Oklahoma County Jail Trust Chairwoman Tricia Everest said she feels encouraged by the applications that came in, though the official number will not be made known until trustees meet Oct. 18 to discuss applicants. [The Oklahoman]

‘Radical Islam’ training course for Oklahoma police removed and changes made to CLEET’s ‘accreditation’ process: Oklahoma’s Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training removed all references to “accreditation” from its website after a Frontier story showed the agency didn’t actually accredit the online courses it was offering to police officers seeking mandatory continuing education. [The Frontier]

Investing in Oklahoma: Lawmakers hear what businesses need: Lawmakers heard Thursday from officers of several highly successful companies with deep roots in Oklahoma about the importance of “home field advantage” in doing business in the state. [Journal Record ????]

Citing ‘very liberal’ leadership in Oklahoma Legislature, state lawmaker leaving seat to run for Congress: A state lawmaker put out with what he called the Oklahoma Legislature’s “very liberal” leadership said Thursday that he’s running for Congress instead of re-election. State Sen. Joseph Silk, R-Broken Bow, said he will enter the 2020 Republican primary in the 2nd District against four-term incumbent Markwayne Mullin. [Tulsa World]

Tulsa World Editorial: Survey by parent group helps define top 10 schools: The Oklahoma Parent Legislative Committee started distributing an online survey last week asking parents to rank measures that determine quality schools. Among the choices are student measures like ACT scores, graduation rates, and college and career readiness. [Editorial Board / Tulsa WorldDespite gains during the teacher walkout, funding for education is still way down from 2008 levels.

‘It’s one of the most rewading careers’: Oklahoma in need of special education teachers: Oklahoma continues to work to rebound in the midst of a teacher shortage, it’s also working to recruit special education teachers the state is lacking. [FOX25]

Tulsa Public Schools wraps up community meetings, now plows into input to cut $20 million from district budget: Tulsa Public Schools concluded its 11-part community engagement series Thursday night, signaling the next stage of a massive budget redesign effort centered on cutting $20 million next year. [Tulsa World]

It’s early, but Tulsa County again leads in flu cases: The first flu statistics of the season are out, and again Tulsa County leads the state in the number of hospitalizations. Tony Sellars is with the State Health Department. He says every region of Oklahoma, with the exception of the Northwest and the Panhandle, are seeing cases of flu. [Public Radio Tulsa]

Former councilman makes new filing in bid to block MAPS measure: A bid to block enactment of MAPS 4 may come down to a determination of whether assembly of the 16 projects was a case of coalition-building or voter coercion. [The Oklahoman]

OU updating conflict of interest policy in wake of federal investigation: A widening investigation into the theft of protected research involving as many as 77 universities nationwide has OU officials pushing to replace a nearly decade-old conflict of interest policy by the end of the month. [NonDoc]

Quote of the Day

“We can’t afford to just squeak by. We need to deliver a message that will resonate across the state later this month when we turn in these signatures.”

– Amber England, manager of the Yes on 802 campaign, on why they will continue to collect signatures up until the October 28th deadline [The Oklahoman]

Number of the Day


Percentage of LGBTQ+ Oklahomans who are food insecure, compared to 19% of non-LGBTQ+ Oklahomans #LGBTQHistoryMonth

[Source: Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law]

See previous Numbers of the Day here.

Policy Note

Health insurance that doesn’t cover the bills has flooded the market under Trump: In interviews, lawsuits, and complaints to regulators, dozens of its customers say they were tricked into buying plans they didn’t realize were substandard until they were stuck with surprise bills. [Bloomberg]

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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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