Weekly Wonk Sunday April 7, 2013

The 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.

OK Policy Director, David Blatt was quoted in a Chicago Tribune online article discussing a proposed Illinois fracking tax, in the Oklahoma Gazette regarding the income inequality gap in Oklahoma, and in a Tulsa World article highlighting Oklahoma’s national standing in minimum-wage job proportion. David’s column in the Journal Record reviewed how decades of new education standards and mandates pile on top of each other with each shift in the political winds, often without follow-through to fully fund them. In the Oklahoma Gazette, OK Policy analyst Gene Perry made the case against parent triggers.


This week on our blog we discussed how the federal government is showing great flexibility over how states can extend health care coverage with the new Medicaid dollars. We examined how distributing tax refunds with prepaid debit cards may be saving the state money by pushing fees onto low-income Oklahomans and shared a new way to dig into our information and ideas using the “Deep Diver” technology developed by Moomat. A guest post on the OK Policy Blog discusses America’s struggle with nursing care staffing shortages.


Numbers of the Day

  • 1 in 5 – The proportion of Oklahoma children that participate in a local library program, FY 2009
  • 7 – The number of states with no income tax (out of 9) that have a higher rate of unemployment than Oklahoma
  • 31 percent – Percentage of Oklahoma’s roads that rate “as critical or inadequate” in terms of safety, 2013
  • $12,331,639 – Net economic value lost in Oklahoma through payday lending interest payments made by state residents.
  • 10.9 percent – Percentage of Oklahomans who do not have a bank account at a financial institution


Policy Notes


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