Weekly Wonk February 9, 2014

the_weekly_wonkThe Weekly Wonk is a summary of Oklahoma Policy Institute’s events, publications, blog posts, and coverage. Numbers of the Day and Policy Notes are from our daily news briefing, In The Know. Click here to subscribe to In The Know. 

 As the state legislature returned to session, OK Policy had some suggestions for the agenda. We released a statement in response to the Governor’s budget proposal, and OK Policy Executive Director David Blatt discussed why her budget doesn’t add up. You can review our 2014 Legislative Primer here.

On the OK Policy blog, Blatt shared the story of an Oklahoma entrepreneur who was able to purchase health insurance for the first time in nearly two decades thanks to the Affordable Care Act. Policy analyst Carly Putnam argued that the Affordable Care Act is, in fact, affordable. In a guest post, OK Policy Research Fellow JeVonna Caine explained why Oklahoma is seeing a drop in federal Medicaid funding.  

In his Journal Record column, Blatt reiterated the necessity of curbing tax breaks for horizontal oil and gas drilling. OK Policy’s opposition to the tax breaks was noted by KGOU, and Oklahoma Watchdog quoted Blatt on the topic.  We’ve written about the tax breaks before. KGOU also cited Blatt’s concerns about the budget shortfall, as did the Norman Transcript and Woodward News

Numbers of the Day

  • 43 cents – The portion of each dollar the state of Oklahoma spent in FY 2011 that came from federal funds, the 7th highest percentage in the nation
  • $1.3 million – How much Oklahoma spent on psychiatric medications for prison inmates in 2013
  • 42,100 – Number of people employed by Indian Tribes in Oklahoma
  • $47.7 million  – How much Governor Fallin’s FY 2015 budget proposal would cut Medicaid, slightly more than the revenue loss from her proposed tax cut for top earners ($47.4 million)
  • $13.6 billion – The lowball forecast of the ten-year net fiscal impact to the state were Oklahoma to expand Medicaid

 Policy Notes


Carly Putnam joined OK Policy in 2013. As Policy Director, she supervises policy research and strategy. She previously worked as an OK Policy intern, and she was OK Policy's health care policy analyst through July 2020. She graduated from the University of Tulsa in 2013. As a student, she was a participant in the National Education for Women (N.E.W.) Leadership Institute and interned with Planned Parenthood. Carly is a graduate of the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits Nonprofit Management Certification; the Oklahoma Developmental Disabilities Council’s Partners in Policymaking; The Mine, a social entrepreneurship fellowship in Tulsa; and Leadership Tulsa Class 62. She currently serves on the boards of Restore Hope Ministries and The Arc of Oklahoma. In her free time, she enjoys reading, cooking, and doing battle with her hundred year-old house.

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