Matt Trotter

Reporter

Matt Trotter joined KWGS as a reporter in 2013. Before coming to Public Radio Tulsa, he was the investigative producer at KJRH. His freelance work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and on MSNBC and CNN. 

He has a master's degree from Arizona State University, where he spent a semester on the first reporting staff of Cronkite News Service's Washington, D.C., bureau. As a grad student, he won awards for multimedia journalism and in-depth TV reporting.

Matt is from Southern California, so he's slowly following Route 66 across the United States. He would have made it Chicago by now, but he's not a fan of long drives.

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Local & Regional
2:28 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

State Law May Stop Tulsa's Interest in Red Light Cameras

Credit City of Tulsa

Tulsa doesn’t have red light cameras, and barring a change in state law, it will probably stay that way.

City prosecutor Bob Garner told city councilors that Oklahoma is one of those states with laws classifying running a red light as a criminal misdemeanor.

"As a criminal misdemeanor violation, it must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt," Garner said.

That’s a much higher threshold than in states that consider the violation a civil offense. It means Tulsa would likely have to devote an officer to reviewing camera footage.

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Local & Regional
2:17 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Lawmakers Unlikely to Cut Business Tax Breaks to Boost FY2016 Budget

Credit KWGS News File Photo

Although Oklahoma faces a $300 million budget shortfall for next fiscal year, don’t expect lawmakers to slash business tax incentives to close the gap.

Budget summit panelists this week said it’s unrealistic to think the legislature will put any of the state’s dozens of incentives on the chopping block this year. Mark VanLandingham with the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber said doing so risks breaking promises already made to businesses.

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Local & Regional
5:55 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

Anti-Gay Legislation Could Hurt State's Economy in the Long Run

Credit file photo

A flurry of anti-gay legislation could damage Oklahoma's chances of attracting top companies to the state.

Oklahoma College of Business Dean Mickey Hepner said large companies employ diverse work forces and have an eye on social policies when they consider opening up shop in a state.

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Local & Regional
5:37 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

Summit Paints Bleaker Picture of State Budget

Credit KWGS News File Photo

Despite some signs of recovery, Oklahoma's budget struggles look set to continue for the foreseeable future.

"The budget challenges that we are facing this year in 2015, and looking ahead to 2016, are not one-off problems," said Oklahoma Policy Institute Director David Blatt.

At the group's 2015 budget summit in Oklahoma City, Blatt said state tax collections aren't keeping pace with a growing state economy, and tax cuts exacerbate the problem. Oklahoma is about on course with an OSU economist's 2007 projection of a multibillion dollar state deficit by 2035.

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Local & Regional
3:15 pm
Wed January 28, 2015

Cherokee Veteran Headed to the Super Bowl

Cherokee veteran Dustin Butler (green shirt) is among 11 veterans receiving an all-expenses-paid trip to the Super Bowl from Operation Enduring Respect. He's pictured with (from left) Cherokee Nation Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden, Principal Chief Bill John Baker and Chief of Staff Chuck Hoskin Sr.
Credit Cherokee Nation

A veterans’ group picks a Cherokee among 11 veterans to receive a free trip to the Super Bowl.

"To be able to take these guys, it's just honoring them for their service and thanking them for their service and the sacrifices they made and sacrifices their families make for those guys going overseas," said Kevin Phelps with Operation Enduring Respect.

Marine Corps and Air Force Reserves veteran Dustin Butler leaves Oklahoma Friday for the big game. He said getting Phelps’ call was unbelievable.

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Local & Regional
2:03 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Group Forms to Fight Anti-Gay State Legislation

Two of Oklahoma’s biggest LGBT groups team up to form Freedom Oklahoma.

"Most fair-minded Oklahomans want the legislature to be focused on education and the budget shortfall, making sure that we have teachers in classrooms, not on this slate of hate-filled legislation that we're seeing from a few representatives and senators down at the capitol," said advocacy director Amanda Snipes.

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Local & Regional
7:03 am
Tue January 27, 2015

Several Earthquakes Shake Oklahoma

Credit File photo

It’s been a busy 24 hours for seismic activity in Oklahoma.

There have been 10 earthquakes within or very near the state’s borders — six of them magnitude 3.0 or greater. The closest one to Tulsa is also the most recent. A 3.8 magnitude quake centered about two miles southeast of Perry was felt just after 5:30 a.m.

Yesterday at 1:30 p.m., a 4.3 magnitude earthquake centered three miles northeast of Medford was felt into Wichita.

No injuries or damage have been reported.

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Local & Regional
6:49 am
Tue January 27, 2015

Tulsa's Tuesday Morning News

 In the news this morning:

  • The search for a new Tulsa Public Schools superintendent continues.
  • New state superintendent Joy Hofmeister proposes raising teacher salaries.
  • Attorney General Scott Pruitt requests stays of execution for three inmates.   
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Local & Regional
2:28 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

National School Choice Week is Underway

National School Choice Week is underway for the fifth year running.

Shelby Tankersley with the National School Choice Week organization says their mission is to help parents choose the best option for their children from an array of choices.

"Those education options include traditional public schools, public charter schools, magnet schools, online academies, home schools and private schools," Tankersley said.

It’s not, however, about pushing one type of school over others.

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Local & Regional
1:43 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

AG Asks Supreme Court to Stay Three Executions

Credit File photo

Attorney General Scott Pruitt wants the U.S. Supreme Court to stay three executions until the death row inmates’ lawsuit is resolved.

Richard Glossip, John Grant and Benjamin Cole’s deaths have been scheduled, but Pruitt’s press secretary Will Gattenby said this is a necessary step.

"It is important that the attorney general act in order to best serve the interests of the victims of these horrific crimes and the state's obligation to ensure justice in each and every case," Gattenby said.

The lawsuit centers on Oklahoma’s use of the sedative midazolam.

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