In The Know: Richard Glossip execution halted by Oklahoma court

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

Richard Glossip execution halted by Oklahoma court: Three and a half hours before he was scheduled to die by lethal injection, Richard Glossip won a two-week reprieve on Wednesday from an Oklahoma appeals court, which said it wanted time to study new evidence filed by his lawyers the day before. A new team of lawyers produced accounts from two people that, they said, demolished the credibility of the main witness who had implicated Mr. Glossip, who was not tied to the crime by any physical evidence [New York Times]. Meanwhile, federal public defenders continued to pursue an injunction seeking to block the state’s plans to use the sedative midazolam to execute Glossip and two other inmates set to die next month. In a filing Wednesday, Glossip’s attorneys asked a federal judge for a preliminary injunction staying the execution due to new information about the availability of lethal drugs [Oklahoma Watch].

State general revenue collections 5.3 percent below projections in August: Preston L. Doerflinger, Oklahoma secretary of finance, administration and information technology, said Wednesday low collections could eventually force state spending cutbacks. Falling more than 5 percent off the estimate for the year for too long could mean automatic budget reductions across every state agency [NewsOK].

Budget promises a dreary sequel: This fall, excitement is building across the nation for the December release of The Force Awakens, the Star Wars saga’s long-awaited next chapter. Millions of fans have viewed online trailers for closely guarded clues about how the continuation of the epic series will unfold. In Oklahoma, political observers are waiting with equal interest, if far less excitement, for the latest sequel to what has become our own never-ending saga, one we can call The Attack of the Budget Shortfall [David Blatt / Journal Record].

Lawmaker, sheriffs and prosecutors say fee increase not enough to fund courthouse security: State Rep. Scott Biggs said counties need to do more to protect people, despite recent legislation that allows counties to enact a $10 civil filing fee for courthouse security. Grady County Sheriff Jim Weir said security is a problem at his courthouse because the county has such a small budget. Even if the county adopts the $10 civil filing fee, it would only bring in about $50,000 annually, he said. “But we still need money for more personnel to really shut down the courthouse the way it ought to be,” he said [Journal Record].

Welcoming Tyler Parette to the OK Policy team: Oklahoma Policy Institute is very pleased to announce that we have hired Tyler Parette as our new Outreach and Operations Associate. In the newly-created position, Parette’s responsibilities include providing organizational and administrative support to the whole OK Policy team. He will also help to strengthen our coalitions through Together Oklahoma and the Oklahoma Assets Network, as well as facilitating our growing Summer Policy Institute and Research Fellow alumni networks [OK Policy].

Some want more rules of the road near disposal wells: For the last year-and-a-half, Rick Lasseter’s sign has politely urged oil-field traffic to slow down as vehicles drive along a dirt road outside his house. It hasn’t worked. He said the trucks, many of them loaded with what he believes is oil or wastewater, still race down the county road faster than the suggested 35-mph speed limit. He’s thought about adding a second sign thanking those who have slowed down [Journal Record].

Justice Department awards $12 million to Oklahoma tribes: The U.S. Department of Justice has awarded more than $12.5 million to 13 Oklahoma tribes to improve public safety and programs for crime victims. The grants are among 206 national awards totaling more than $97 million announced Wednesday for American Indian tribes, Alaska Native villages, tribal consortia and tribal designees [Tulsa World].

Quote of the Day

“I hear Tulsans saying it’s time to weigh the cost of building a robust transit system against the cost and disadvantages we create for ourselves by not offering one. Millennials in Tulsa postponing home buying while having no option to rid themselves of car expenses are passionate in their support of public transit as are older citizens facing isolation when driving is no longer an option. Employers and employees whose productivity and quality of life are hampered by a transit system whose service runs every 45 minutes, every 90 minutes or not at all on weekends, feel the economic hardship of Tulsa’s system where it hurts the most … in the pocketbook.”

-University of Tulsa Vice President and Gilcrease Museum CEO Susan Neal (Source)

Number of the Day


Percentage of pregnant women in Oklahoma who received prenatal care beginning in the first trimester, trailing the national average of 73.1 percent.

Source: Oklahoma State Department of Health

See previous Numbers of the Day here.

Policy Note

The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration: American politicians are now eager to disown a failed criminal-justice system that’s left the U.S. with the largest incarcerated population in the world. But they’ve failed to reckon with history. Fifty years after Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s report “The Negro Family” tragically helped create this system, it’s time to reclaim his original intent [The Atlantic].

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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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