Oklahoma

States Preparing for Legal Sports Betting | 11-10-2017

Thirteen states have introduced and three have passed legislation this year dealing with the legalization of sports betting, currently prohibited in all but a handful of states by the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) passed by Congress...

Sexual Harassment Prevalent Problem in Statehouses | 11-03-2017

Incidents of sexual harassment or sexual assault involving female state lawmakers, legislative staff or lobbyists have been reported recently in at least 16 states. The legislatures in all of those states have training programs or policies in place to...

Politics In Brief - October 23 2017 | 10-20-2017

GA TRIES OUT PAPER-BALLOT VOTING MACHINES GEORGIA initiated the first step of a new paper-ballot voting machine pilot program last week with the start of early voting ahead of local contests and special elections on Nov. 7. The aim of the test, in...

Lawmaker Resignations Costing OK | 10-13-2017

Oklahoma could spend over a quarter of a million dollars on special elections this year. The reason? The need to fill eight vacancies in the state’s Legislature - four in the House and four in the Senate. One of those vacancies was created...

Budgets In Brief - October 16 2017 | 10-13-2017

NY NEEDS $27B FOR BRIDGE REPAIRS NEW YORK state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli (D) said the state needs $27 billion to repair hundreds of locally owned bridges in the state. Nearly 13 percent of the roughly 8,500 bridges owned by local governments are...

Politics In Brief - October 16 2017 | 10-13-2017

OK CONSIDERS COOLING-OFF PERIOD FOR STATE OFFICIALS The OKLAHOMA Ethics Commission is considering banning state officials and employees from lobbying for two years from the time their government service ends. Over 30 states already have such cooling...

Social Policy - October 16 2017 | 10-13-2017

Social Policy In Oklahoma An OKLAHOMA court strikes down a Sooner State law that required doctors prescribing abortion-inducing medications to follow a protocol established in 2000 rather than updated protocols offered by drug makers. District Judge...

Politics In Brief - October 2 2017 | 09-29-2017

DHS CONTACTS STATES ABOUT 2016 ELECTION HACKING The Department of Homeland Security directly notified election officials in 21 states last month that they had been targeted by hackers connected to the Russian government during the 2016 election campaign...

Budgets In Brief - September 18 2017 | 09-15-2017

OK GOV TO CALL SPECIAL SESSION TO FIX BUDGET: OKLAHOMA Gov. Mary Fallin (R) said she will ask lawmakers to convene a special session on Sept. 25 to make adjustments to the budget after the Oklahoma Supreme Court rejected a proposed cigarette tax. The...

New Front Opens In GOP Fight Against Unions | 08-18-2017

After Republicans won control of the Iowa Senate last year, giving them control of both the legislative and executive branches of that state’s government, they enacted a package of labor reforms curbing the collective bargaining rights of public...

States Struggling To Tax Services | 06-30-2017

Over the past 50 years the manufacturing industry has gone from comprising a third of the U.S. economy to 18 percent, while the services industry has gone from making up half of U.S. GDP to over two-thirds. States have tried to adjust to that shift...

Budgets In Brief - July 3 2017 | 06-30-2017

KS Gov Signs Budget With Tax Increase KANSAS Gov. Sam Brownback(R)signed a $15.6 billion state budget last month that includes the $1.2 billion income tax increase approved by lawmakers. The governor vetoed that rollback of the income tax cuts he championed...

Budgets In Brief - June 19 2017 | 06-16-2017

IL Gov Calls Special Budget Session ILLINOIS Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) has called a special session to try to end the state’s unprecedented budget impasse that has already drug on for two years and will enter its third on July 1. The special session...

Budgets In Brief - May 15 2017 | 05-12-2017

GA Gov Signs Rural Investment Tax Credit Bill GEORGIA Gov. Nathan Deal (R) signed legislation ( SB 133 ) providing $60 million in tax credits for companies that invest in businesses in rural areas. The measure has been both criticized as a handout...

Tax Cuts Creating Distress In OK | 05-04-2017

A few years ago when Oklahoma’s economy was booming, Republicans who control the state’s government pushed through a permanent reduction in the state’s top income tax rate and slashed the oil production tax rate by 5 percent (from 7...

Education - May 1 2017 | 04-28-2017

Oklahoma Approves HB 1693 The OKLAHOMA Senate approves HB 1693 , which would overhaul the Sooner State’s public school accountability system to give equal weight to student performance in English language arts and mathematics as well as student...

Governors In Brief - May 1 2017 | 04-28-2017

AK Lawmakers Dodge Walker Call for Action On Appointments Saying it was “time to bring [them] to a close,” ALASKA Gov. Bill Walker (I) issued a proclamation last week calling for a joint session of the Last Frontier Legislature to force...

Budgets In Brief - April 17 2017 | 04-14-2017

NH HOUSE FAILS TO PASS BUDGET NEW HAMPSHIRE’s Republican-controlled House failed to pass the budget proposed by the chamber’s Finance Committee for the first time since the 1960s, due to limited Democratic support and a “large faction”...

Opioid Overdose Rates Up and Rising in States | 03-31-2017

Between 2014 and 2015 death rates due to opioid overdose rose by over 25 percent - more than twice the national average (11 percent) - in five states and the District of Columbia. The five states with the highest opioid death rates in 2015 were West Virginia...

Health & Science - April 3 2017 | 03-31-2017

Oklahoma Senate Declines SB 226 The OKLAHOMA Senate Judiciary Committee declines to hear SB 226 , so-called “Good Samaritan” legislation that would have allowed Sooner State law enforcement discretion to not arrest someone who calls for...

This Could Explain A Lot | 03-17-2017

If you have ever seen legislation come out of a statehouse and wondered, “What is wrong with those folks,” freshman Rhode Island Rep. Moira Walsh may have the answer. As radio station WPRO in East Providence reports , when asked during a recent...

Crime & Punishment - March 13 2017 | 03-10-2017

US Supreme Court Rules Overturn Colorado Supreme Court Ruling The United States Supreme Court rules that reports of racist comments by jurors may require setting aside a verdict and holding a new trial. The ruling overturns a COLORADO Supreme Court...

Conditions Ripe For State Gas Tax Hikes | 02-17-2017

With gas prices at their lowest point in over a decade, gas tax-fueled transportation funding having failed to keep pace with mounting road repair needs and a chaotic post-election period providing a chance to take on controversial issues, there may never...

Budgets In Brief - February 6 2017 | 02-03-2017

Indian Gaming Boosting OK Economy Native American tribes have paid the state of OKLAHOMA over $1 billion in exclusivity fees since 2006, according to a report from the Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association. The report also indicated that tribal gaming...

OK Dem Wants to Eliminate Straight-Party Voting | 12-16-2016

Oklahoma Sen. J.J. Dossett (D) has filed a bill ( SB 9 ) that would do away with straight-party voting in the state. “I think it is unnecessary to have the straight-party option,” he said. “I think it is something that might have...

Social Policy - December 19 2016 | 12-16-2016

Social Policy In OH OHIO Gov. John Kasich (R) vetoes HB 493 , which would have made it a fifth-degree felony, punishable by up to one year in prison, for a physician to perform an abortion without checking for a fetal heartbeat or performing the procedure...

Consultants Recommend OK Curb Wind Power Incentive | 11-11-2016

The most significant recommendation this month from a consulting firm hired by Oklahoma to review the hundreds of millions of dollars in business incentives it doles out every year was to limit an income tax credit for wind-power electric generating plants...

Citizen Initiatives Push Ballot Measures Left This Year | 10-14-2016

In addition to state legislative elections that could flip party control of 18 chambers across the country, 157 statewide ballot measures will also be contested in 35 states on Nov. 8. The measures include an unusually high number of citizen initiatives...

Social Policy - October 10 2016 | 10-07-2016

Social Policy In Oklahoma The OKLAHOMA Supreme Court rules that a 2015 law ( SB 642 ) that would have made it a felony for someone to help a minor obtain an abortion without parental consent is unconstitutional. The court ruled that the law, which...

States Sue To Block Federal Overtime Rule | 09-30-2016

Twenty-one predominantly Republican-governed states have filed a federal lawsuit challenging a new Obama administration rule extending mandatory overtime pay to millions of American workers. The rule, which was finalized in May and takes effect in December...

Business - September 19 2016 | 09-16-2016

Business In Oklahoma The OKLAHOMA Supreme Court rules that a 2013 law giving Sooner State employers the power to “opt out” of the state workers’ compensation system and write their own plans is unconstitutional. The law, which supporters...

Public Pension Return Rates Lagging In States | 08-19-2016

Investment returns for large public pension plans in the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2015 were significantly lower than the plans’ assumed rates of return, according to money management news source Pensions & Investments . The one-year return...

Budgets In Brief - August 22 2016 | 08-19-2016

Medical Marijuana Could Give Big Budget Boost to OH Annual medical marijuana sales in OHIO , legalized by Gov. John Kasich’s (R) signing of HB 523 in June, could reach $400 million in two or three years, making the state one of the nation’s...

Most States Allow Transportation Network Companies | 08-12-2016

Thirty-seven states have passed laws regulating transportation network companies (TNCs), according to the R Street Institute and LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking database. The most recent addition to that group is Delaware, where Gov...

Texas et al Win Challenge To Obama Immigration Policy | 07-15-2016

Twenty-five states joined Texas in challenging President Obama’s executive actions on immigration policy in November 2014, expanding temporary relief from deportation for undocumented immigrants. Fifteen states also filed amicus, or “friend...

Little Correlation Between Gun Laws and Worst Mass Shootings | 07-08-2016

Three of the eight states where the deadliest mass shootings since 1984 have occurred - California, Connecticut and New York - are among those with the strictest gun laws, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. None of those shootings took...

Federal Judge OKs OH Voter Purge | 07-01-2016

A federal judge ruled last month that Ohio Secretary of State John Husted (R) had the authority to purge thousands of inactive voters from the state’s voter rolls. The American Civil Liberties Union had alleged that Husted’s policy of removing...

Hoop Bribery | 06-17-2016

Kevin Durant of the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder is set to become a free agent soon. As one of the league’s best players, he is for sure gonna cash in big time. But while teams in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago or Dallas might be able to offer...

Business - June 13 2016 | 06-10-2016

CA Approves AB 1676 The CALIFORNIA Assembly approves AB 1676 , which bars employers from asking job applicants for their salary histories. The measure is now in the Senate (LEXISNEXIS STATE NET). PA Gov Signs HB 1690 PENNSYLVANIA Gov. Tom Wolf...

Budgets In Brief - June 13 2016 | 06-10-2016

OK Revenues Hit 6-Year Low OKLAHOMA Treasurer Ken Miller reported last week that state revenues fell to a six-year low in May, with collections in every major revenue category, including income taxes, sales taxes, motor vehicles taxes and taxes on...

Social Policy - June 13 2016 | 06-10-2016

OK Gov Signs HB 2797 OKLAHOMA Gov. Mary Fallin (R) signs HB 2797 , which requires Sooner State education officials “to establish, operate and maintain a public information program to educate the public about the humanity of a child in utero”...

Crime & Punishment - May 23 2016 | 05-20-2016

AZ, OH, OK Delay Executions Pharmaceutical manufacturer Pfizer announces it will enact protocols to ensure states are no longer able to use drugs it provides as part of carrying out a lethal injection execution. At least 20 other U.S. and European...

Health & Science - May 23 2016 | 05-20-2016

NC Approves SB 734 The NORTH CAROLINA Senate approves SB 734 , which allows the state’s Health Director to issue a statewide standing order making the anti-overdose drug Naloxone and other “opiod antagonists” available in drug stores...

Social Policy - May 23 2016 | 05-20-2016

OK Approves SB 1552 The OKLAHOMA Senate approves SB 1552 , legislation that would outlaw all abortions and subject providers to a loss of license and jail time. It moves to Gov. Mary Fallin (R) for consideration (OKLAHOMAN [OKLAHOMA CITY]). KS Gov...

Majority of States Looking at Daily Fantasy Sports | 05-13-2016

Thirty-three states have considered legislation related to daily fantasy sports this year, according to LegalSportsReport.com and LexisNexis State Net legislative data. DFS bills have been passed in four states, including Virginia, which enacted two....

OK Governor Signs Justice Reform Package | 04-29-2016

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) signed a quartet of bills last week aimed at reducing the Sooner State’s burgeoning prison population. Oklahoma leads the nation in incarceration rate for women and is second nationally for men. The measures,...

Budgets In Brief - May 2 2016 | 04-29-2016

Internet Tax Bill Advances in OK The OKLAHOMA Senate passed an amended version of HB 2531 last month that will require out-of-state companies to provide Oklahoma customers a statement at the end of the year indicating the amount of their purchases...

Flurry of Remote Sales Tax Bills in States This Year | 04-08-2016

At least a dozen states have introduced legislation in 2016 related to out-of-state, or remote, sales taxes, according to LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking database. Most of the bills have been aimed at expanding the definition of a state...

Education - April 11 2016 | 04-08-2016

Education in MA The MASSACHUSETTS Senate endorses SB 2203 , legislation that would gradually lift the cap on the number of charter schools in the Bay State but tie that to increased funding for all public schools. The measure now moves to the House...

Politics In Brief - April 4 2016 | 04-01-2016

High Court Denies Challenge of CO Pot Laws The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear NEBRASKA and OKLAHOMA’s challenge of COLORADO's marijuana legalization laws. The 6-2 vote means COLORADO’s first-of-their-kind cannabis laws will...