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
2:00 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Conservation Tree Sale Stops in Downtown Tulsa

Oklahoma Forestry Services' truck sale stops in downtown Tulsa Friday. The agency is selling trees at cost for conservation purposes.
Credit Oklahoma Forestry Services

Oklahoma Forestry Services will be in downtown Tulsa tomorrow selling seedlings. It’s one stop in a month-long, statewide truck sale for conservation purposes like erosion control.

Nursery manager Scott Huff says the minimum order is 100 seedlings.

"We have several varieties of pine trees. We have several varieties of oak trees. We have shrubs. We have lacebark elm. There's several different varieties that we have," Huff said. "You know, Oklahoma's a great state, and it's pretty big, so we try to provide a little bit of everything that will grow throughout the state."

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Local & Regional
3:22 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Oklahoma Ranks Fifth for Highest Average Combined Sales Tax

Oklahoma has the nation's fifth-highest combined average sales tax rate, but an economist suggests broadening the tax base and lowering the rate rather than abolishing sales tax.
Credit File photo

Oklahoma has the fifth-highest average combined state and local sales tax in the U.S.

A study from the non-profit Tax Foundation finds the rate is 8.72 percent, just 0.73 percent behind No. 1 Tennessee. Tax Foundation economist Scott Drenkard said high-sales tax states need to broaden the base and lower the rate.

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Local & Regional
2:51 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Inhofe Weighs In on Ukraine During Port of Catoosa Visit

Sen. Jim Inhofe visited the Port of Catoosa Tuesday to give an update on related issues in Washington. The conversation soon turned to problems in Ukraine.
Credit Matt Trotter / KWGS

Sen. Jim Inhofe gave a legislative update today at the Port of Catoosa that veered into foreign policy.

A question-and-answer session during Inhofe’s remarks to port stakeholders moved from local issues to international ones within about 15 minutes. Several people wanted to know about the situation in Ukraine. Inhofe said any gains made during the Cold War are being lost now.

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Local & Regional
4:03 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Attorneys in Gay Marriage Lawsuit Filing Brief to Counter "Traditional Family" Argument

Gay Phillips (left) stands with Sue Barton, her partner of 29 years, as Barton speaks Monday at a news conference. Coplaintiffs Sharon Bishop (immediately right of Barton) and Mary Baldwin also spoke.
Credit Matt Trotter / KWGS

Plaintiffs in Oklahoma’s same-sex marriage lawsuit strike back at a conservative group’s claim that gay unions will ruin traditional families.

Attorneys are filing a brief in response to a conservative group’s brief that claims same-sex unions will hurt traditional ones and children.

Sue Barton, one of the four plaintiffs, said at a news conference today those claims are nonsense.

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Local & Regional
3:01 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Broken Arrow Rank on Income Equality Depends on Calculation

Credit File Photo

A study ranks Broken Arrow highly for income equality, but it uses a different measure than a similar analysis.

Financial data company NerdWallet came up with an income ratio of 8.8 for Broken Arrow, "which essentially means that, that gap between the lowest-earning 20 percent and the highest-earning 20 percent in Broken Arrow is a lot smaller than in most other places in the country," explained company analyst Sreekar Jasthi.

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Local & Regional
11:50 am
Thu March 13, 2014

Task Force Hears From Riverfront Businesses

Sharon King Davis talks to the River Task Force this morning.
Credit KWGS News/Tgov

Tulsa's river task force heard today from riverfront businesses about the impact low-water dams would have on them. 

Sharon King Davis developed Kings Landing, a retail center on Riverside Drive south of 91st Street. She urged the task force to adopt INCOG's corridor plan, which would give guidelines for future development. 

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Local & Regional
3:30 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Commercial Real Estate Market Looking Good, Especially for Retailers

One local commercial realtor said his portfolio is more than 90 percent occupied, and what's left is "problem units," such as those on the corner of a development. What used to be Ella's on Harvard Avenue north of 31st Street is a corner unit, and it's been vacant for some time.
Credit Matt Trotter / KWGS

The Greater Tulsa Association of Realtors gave a positive overview of the area’s commercial real estate today at its 2014 market update.

GBR Properties Vice President of Retail Bob Parker says his portfolio reflects the retail sector leaving the recession behind.  

"We're 90–92 percent occupied. All of the spaces that are available in my centers are the troubled spaces: Corner spaces with no frontage or something around the backs, just weird stuff," Parker said. "So I'm kind of stuck with, perhaps, mistakes made in the development phase of it."

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Local & Regional
1:19 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

City of Tulsa Offers Help to Disadvantaged Small Businesses

Service Corps of Retired Executives Managing Director Jim Soloman (right), Tulsa Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Rose Washington, Chris Wheeler with ONB Bank, Scott DeGeer with Oklahoma Small Business Development Centers and ONB Bank Senior Vice President of commercial lending Michael Feuerborn participate in a panel discussion on banking and technical assistance at Tuesday's BRIDGE event.
Credit Matt Trotter / KWGS

The City of Tulsa hosted its seventh annual Building Resources in Developing and Growing Enterprises (BRIDGE) event today to help small businesses.

Jackson Landrum, the interim director of the city's human rights department, says the goal of the event is to "work with disadvantaged businesses in developing and actually taking off and becoming self-sufficient.

"Any way that the City of Tulsa can help them in providing that service, that's what we're here to do."

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Local & Regional
3:46 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

City Officials Consider Changing Tulsa's Flood Standards

A flood the size of the one Tulsa experienced in 1986 would likely cause sewer backup into the area A Gathering Place is being built at, shown by the light brown area around 31st Street. Tulsa's current flood standard is for a flood with a 1 percent chance of happening in a given year. That floodplain is shown in blue.
Credit Engineering Services / City of Tulsa

Tulsa city officials have started a discussion on changing Arkansas River flood regulations.

Tulsa’s current standard is construction must be 1 foot above the level of a flood with a 1 percent chance of happening any given year. The city could instead base the standard on the 1986 flood, which was 50 percent larger.

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Local & Regional
3:31 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Tulsa Police Begin Municipal Warrant Sweep

Tulsa Police Deputy Chief Dennis Larsen announces the department's municipal warrant sweep, which began today. Court Administrator Kelly Brader was at the announcement as well.
Credit Matt Trotter / KWGS

Tulsa Police started a municipal warrant sweep today that will go on all week.

A task force of up to 15 officers will find citizens with outstanding warrants and arrest them at home or work if necessary. Deputy Chief Dennis Larsen said he doesn’t want to put someone in jail over a traffic ticket, but something needs to be done.

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