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
2:47 pm
Fri March 6, 2015

Signature Quartet Launches Early Childhood Music Program

TCC's Signature Quartet — from left, Rachel Hay, Eric Samuelson, Jeff Smith and Erica Parker — plays for children Friday at the college's west campus child development center.
Credit Matt Trotter / KWGS

Ladies and gentlemen — Seedling Symphony.

Tulsa Community College’s string-piece Signature Quartet is launching the early childhood educational program.

Cellist Erica Parker said the music alone stimulates many areas of young brains.

"But then when you add motion skills and behavioral skills and emotional skills into what they're listening to, then that's only going to make them smarter and get better and faster at their skills in a classroom environment," Parker said.

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Local & Regional
2:38 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Public Safety Task Force Asks Police, Fire Chiefs About Needs and Performance

Credit KWGS News

Tulsa’s public safety task force asks the police and fire departments about their past performance and what they could do if properly funded.

Police officials told councilors about things they’ve already done to save money: Hiring crime analysts, enhancing online reporting and using less-lethal weapons. With more funding, they say response times and traffic deaths will go down.

The number of injuries and deaths from car crashes is one of TPD’s performance indicators.

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Local & Regional
3:27 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

State Senate Passes Two Tax Credit Reform Bills

Credit File Photo

Calls for tax credit reform in Oklahoma are being answered by lawmakers.

The Senate passed two bills dealing with the state’s 77 business tax incentives, both written by Sens. Brian Bingman and Rick Brinkley.

"The evaluation of tax credits, to able to see if they're effective by having them evaluated, to see ... once they're implemented to see whether or not they're working, if they're not working or if they need to be improved — this provides the mechanism to do that," Brinkley said.

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Local & Regional
3:20 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

House Rejects Bill Amendment to Give Retired Firefighters Pension Increase

Credit Tulsa Fire Department

Oklahoma House members shoot down a bill amendment to give retired firefighters a cost-of-living adjustment.

The House passed a bill to require the state firefighters pension board to use IRS guidelines in evaluating rollovers. Rep. Mike Brown attempted to amend the bill to give retired firefighters a cost-of-living adjustment.

"That is those retirees' retirement money, and wouldn't you agree that we need to be paying some of these retirees some of that money back that haven't had a COLA in many years?" Brown said.

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Local & Regional
3:11 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

Wine Shipment Vote Unlikely This Year

A resolution calling for a popular vote on whether Oklahoma wineries may ship wine to visitors is on hold.

Rep. Dan Kirby asked his resolution calling for the vote be laid over. He seemed frustrated after facing a flurry of questions from Reps. Mike Ritze and Todd Russ, who vehemently oppose relaxing alcohol laws.

Ritze told Kirby he’s worried minors might get their hands on wine sent to the wrong house.

"I get mail from people all the time that are not — to my address, to my — someone I don't even know who lives in the area," Ritze said.

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Local & Regional
2:40 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Mitchell Park Moves Closer to Surplus Designation

Mitchell Park sits across 36th Place from the north end of Bishop Kelley High School's stadium.
Credit Google Maps

Tulsa’s park board recommends selling Mitchell Park, which made it onto a list of potential surplus properties.

The city’s asset management department determined the park can be sold within a month of Bishop Kelley High School stepping forward as a potential buyer.

Parks Director Lucy Dolman said after city councilors approve the surplus designation — if they do so — she needs to ask the state whether there are any outstanding obligations from a matching funds grant obtained decades ago for buying some of the land.

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Local & Regional
1:08 pm
Mon March 2, 2015

Sapulpa, Owasso Voters Among Those Visiting the Polls Tomorrow

Credit File photo

A Tulsa Public Schools bond issue isn’t the only matter Tulsa-area voters will consider tomorrow.

Money is at stake for the city of Sapulpa. Voters will consider bonds totaling $6.6 million spread among four propositions. Economic Development Director Ted Fisher says just over half will go toward mandated repairs to Sahoma Lake Dam and the city’s sewer system.

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Local & Regional
3:46 pm
Fri February 27, 2015

City Councilors Ask for Tulsa Public Education Update

Credit File Photo

City councilors this week asked local leaders in education what Tulsa can do to help bolster public education.

CAP Tulsa Executive Director Steven Dow told them data CAP collected shows kids in the city’s poorest families are less prepared for kindergarten, setting the stage for academic struggle later.

"And so, as a community, when we think about investing our limited resources, investing those during the earliest years and in those children who are coming from the lowest-income households is where we're going to get the greatest return for our dollar," Dow said.

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Local & Regional
3:25 pm
Fri February 27, 2015

Second Tulsa Public Safety Summit Looks at Domestic Violence

Credit Concha García Hernández / Wikipedia

After 12 murders last year were linked to domestic violence, it was the topic of a Tulsa public safety summit today.

Several law enforcement agencies and victim services groups were represented. Mayor Dewey Bartlett said he was surprised to hear how often domestic violence turns into homicide, especially when drugs or alcohol are involved.

"We can't just walk away from it," Bartlett said. "We have to deal with it very directly and very harshly, but also do it in a way that it doesn't become a recurring problem."

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Local & Regional
3:56 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

State Legislature Moves Toward Constitutional Convention

Credit Wikipedia

Both chambers of the Oklahoma legislature are preparing the state for a constitutional convention.

The Senate Rules Committee passed Sen. Rob Standridge’s bill to establish how delegates would be selected.

"Two delegates will be appointed by majority vote of the House of Representatives, and two will be appointed by majority vote of the Senate," Standridge said. "And one shall be appointed by receiving a majority vote of all members elected."

The bill passed 8–5. Standridge assured committee members other states can’t pull a fast one by sending more delegates.

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