The Weekly Wonk: December 7, 2012

What’s up this week at Oklahoma Policy Institute? The Weekly Wonk is dedicated to this week’s events, publications, and blog posts.

This week Oklahoma Policy Institute discussed how the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program could give more than 9,000 young Oklahoma immigrants a shot at the American Dream.  We blogged about expanding access to microcredit, and how it empowers companies employing 5 or fewer workers, which make up 88 percent of Oklahoma’s businesses.

A guest blogger reviewed a new report from ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) and Arthur Laffer and detailed how their recommendations would fail to produce prosperity in the states.  The OK Policy Blog revealed why rising inequality is bad for business.  

Our director David Blatt explained in his Journal Record column why persistent and widening economic inequality erodes the quality of life in Oklahoma.  Policy Analyst Kate Richey was quoted in an Urban Tulsa Weekly article about how the state’s recently enacted affirmative action ban might affect city contracting. 

Policy Notes

Numbers of the Day

  • 5,696 – Number of state and federal prisoners in Oklahoma being held in private prison facilities, 21.8 percent of all the state’s prisoners
  • 77 – The number of occupational fatalities in Oklahoma in 2011
  • 15 percent – Percentage of Oklahoma’s public school funding (K-12) that comes from the federal government, 13th highest among the states in 2010-2011
  • $426,125,520 – The costs to Oklahoma in 2012 of the ongoing drought, including crops and livestock losses, wildfire damage and municipal costs
  • 23 – Number of states that have prohibited (15) or tightly restricted (8) payday lending, 2012


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