Local & Regional

Flaherty and Collins

For more than a month, the Reasor’s name has been off a development slated for a Performing Arts Center parking lot at Third Street and Cincinnati Avenue.

Indiana-based Flaherty and Collins is quietly getting some help recruiting a first-class grocer as its anchor tenant for the downtown project known as The Annex. Mayor G.T. Bynum's Office of Economic Development is involved.

Matt Trotter / KWGS

Oklahoma law currently says electronic prescribing may be used for controlled substances. A task force wants that "may" changed to "shall."

The one-word switch would effectively end paper prescriptions for opioids, which are Schedule II drugs. Tulsa County Director of Governmental Affairs Terry Simonson said those are easily forged.

Nearly every expert on an opioid task force — from pharmacists to DEA agents — was fooled by a fake prescription. A real prescription was scanned and altered on a computer and printed on security paper readily available online.

KWGS News File photo

 

The Oklahoma Department of Human Services announced today the agency will not reduce or eliminate service programs for seniors and people with disabilities on December 1 and January 1 as previously planned.  Governor Mary Fallin approved $26.9 million in short-term funding for the agency when she kept intact parts of the revised budget bill on November 17.  

In the local news:

  • Magic City Books opens in the Art District.
  • The state house will investigate the Oklahoma Health Department.
  • Wild fire danger will be elevated again today.

O-Dot

 

Gov. Mary Fallin will ask the Oklahoma Legislature to return to the state Capitol for a special session to address the state's ongoing budget shortfalls that have jeopardized funding for state services.

Fallin spokesman Michael McNutt said Monday the governor is working to pin down potential dates and define the parameters of her special session call that will determine what kind of bills lawmakers can consider.

One Dead in Likely DUI Crash at Bixby

15 hours ago
KWGS News File Photo

One person is dead in a head-on car crash at Bixby. The wreck happened last night at 111th and South Sheridan.

Police say a car was waiting to turn when the other vehicle left its lane and slammed head-on into the car. The driver of the car that went out of control was killed.

Officials speculate alcohol may have played a factor in the crash.

Oklahoma Forestry Service

It could be another rough wildfire day across northeast Oklahoma. Gusty winds will fan any flames that get started. The National Weather Service says winds could gust to 20 mph during the day today.

Yesterday, fire fighters stayed busy along the Tulsa/Okmulgee County line. A wild fire, possibly started by a welder’s torch, burned over 900 acres. It was most rural area. No homes were damaged, but several hundred hay bales caught fire.

File Photo

With more car crashes, kitchen accidents, turkey fryer mishaps and holiday decorating hazards, the long Thanksgiving weekend can be a busy time of year for paramedics.

EMSA says injuries can be avoided, however, with some simple precautions.

If you’re driving, plan on there being traffic and give yourself extra time to get to your destination.

If you’re frying a turkey this year, it should be well on its way to being thawed. You should only fry a fully thawed turkey. EMSA paramedics handle a handful of turkey fryer–related incidents each year.

KWGS News

People line up around the block at the John 3:16 Mission for the free Thanksgiving food basket giveaway. The Mission has been feeding the hungry for many years during the holiday, and the food basket giveaway runs through Wednesday. In line at the Family and Youth Center on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard are many who say if not for the Mission, they would have no Thanksgiving holiday.

John 3:16’s goal is to feed 20-thousand people through the free Thanksgiving meal and the food basket giveaway. Donations are still needed.

Matt Trotter / KWGS

Bibliophiles celebrated the opening of an independent bookstore in downtown Tulsa on Monday.

Magic City Books at 221 E Archer St. is owned and operated by the nonprofit Tulsa Literary Coalition.

Store founder and TLC President Jeff Martin said they want Magic City to be a place people can discuss and discover new books.

Kepler Gets 15-Years and a Fine

Nov 20, 2017
Tulsa County Booking Photo

Former Tulsa Police Officer Shannon Kepler is headed to prison for the next 15 years. The ex-cop was sentenced this morning in Tulsa County District Court for the 2014 murder of Jeremy Lake. Lake was his estranged daughter’s boy friend.

It took four trials before a jury returned a verdict in the case. The other trials ended with hung juries. Kepler had maintained the shooting was in self-defense, but no other weapon was found at the murder scene. The jury convicted Kepler of the lesser charge of Manslaughter.

Fatal Fire in Midtown Tulsa

Nov 20, 2017
Tulsa Fire Department-Facebook

One person is dead in a pre-dawn fire in Midtown. The blaze was reported in the guesthouse of a home near 30th and South Peoria.

The fire alarm was turned in around 5:30 this Monday morning. Fire equipment blocked the busy intersection of 31st and South Peoria for most of the morning rush.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. No names have been released. A dog also died in the fire.

State Impact

 

A Nebraska regulator is set to decide whether to approve the proposed route of the long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline through the state.

The decision Monday could have a big impact on whether TransCanada Corp. decides to proceed with construction of the project, which was first proposed in 2008 but repeatedly delayed.

The five-member Nebraska Public Service Commission vote is the last major regulatory hurdle for Keystone XL, which was approved earlier this year by President Donald Trump in a reversal of the Obama administration's rejection in 2015.

 

The U.S. Geological Survey has recorded two earthquakes that struck near a central Oklahoma town.

Both temblors hit just east of the Oklahoma City suburb of Edmond early Sunday. The first quake had a preliminary magnitude of 3.7 and struck at 2:12 a.m. The second quake, with a preliminary magnitude of 2.9, followed soon after, hitting at 2:20 a.m.

There were no immediate reports of injury or severe damage.

KWGS News

 

Republican leaders in the Oklahoma House and Senate say they're surprised that Gov. Mary Fallin vetoed a budget plan to raid cash reserves and further cut state agency spending.

Fallon's veto late Friday underscored the ongoing tension between her and House leaders.

House Speaker Charles McCall criticized the governor in a statement Saturday, accusing her of interjecting "more chaos and drama into the lives of Oklahomans."

Trader Joe's

 

Trader Joe's says it has recalled several packaged salads after a supplier said there may be shards of glass or hard plastic inside.

The grocery chain said Saturday on its website that packages of white meat chicken salad, curried white chicken deli salad and turkey cranberry apple salad sold in some areas that expire from Nov. 10-21 could be contaminated.

The products are labeled with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's "inspected" code P-40299.

In the local news:

  • What is next now that the Governor has vetoed most of the budget?
  • Tulsa begins a new program to help teen dads.
  • One man is dead in a Tulsa weekend homicide

Tulsa Police

Tulsa Police are investigating the 76th homicide of the year in Tulsa. A 3e-year-old man was shot and killed in the parking lot of an east Tulsa taco stand. Police say the shooting took place at Taco Don Francisco’s at 21st and South Memorial.

Police say the victim was Jose Luis Cordova. He was rushed to the hospital where he later died.

Police are looking for a suspect in what has been described as a medium sized light colored car, like an Infinity. Detectives have yet to release a motive for the shooting.

KWGS Map

A former Oklahoma correctional officer has pleaded guilty to using unreasonable force on an inmate during a 2014 incident at a jail in El Reno.

The Oklahoman reports that 41-year-old Jason Barber entered the plea Thursday in federal court in Oklahoma City.

Barber was accused of hitting pretrial detainee Lloyd Wayne Tillman during a disciplinary hearing in December 2014. Prosecutors have classified the offense as a misdemeanor because Tillman didn't suffer "bodily injury."

KWGS News File photo

A group of Oklahoma seniors and adults with disabilities who receive in-home state services to keep them out of nursing homes has filed a federal lawsuit against the two agencies that fund the programs.

The lawsuit was filed Friday in federal court in Oklahoma City against the directors of the state's Medicaid agency, the Health Care Authority, and the Oklahoma's Department of Human Services.

Cleveland County Detention Center

The attorney for a former state senator charged with producing and transporting child pornography says his client will plead guilty to one count of child sex trafficking in exchange for U.S. prosecutors dropping three other child pornography charges against him.

Ex-state Sen. Ralph Shortey's attorney Ed Blau confirmed the details of the plea agreement to The Oklahoman on Friday. Blau told the newspaper Shortey wants to put the "painful and humiliating ordeal behind him."

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield threw for 257 yards and three touchdowns after getting dissed by the Kansas captains before kickoff, leading the Number 3 Sooners to a 41-3 rout of the Jayhawks. Saturday's snub by the Jayhawks when Mayfield tried to shake hands began a game full of cursing, lewd gestures and histrionics every bit as interesting as what happened on the field.

Tulsa DA Recuses Office in Bixby Football Case

Nov 18, 2017
DA's Office

There is another twist in the sexual assault/hazing investigation involving members of the Bixby High School football team.

The Tulsa County District Attorney, Steve Kunzweiler, has stepped aside from the case. Any prosecution will now be handled by the Rogers County District Attorney at Claremore.

It is unclear if the DA’s office has the case report. The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation took over the lead in the case earlier in the week from the Bixby police department.

Governor's office

Here is Governor Fallin's veto message and her call for yet another Special Session.

Watch video here:

And Reaction:

Republican leaders in the Oklahoma House and Senate say they're surprised that Gov. Mary Fallin vetoed a budget plan to raid cash reserves and further cut state agency spending.

Fallon's veto late Friday underscored the ongoing tension between her and House leaders.

Gov. Mary Fallin's Office

Gov. Mary Fallin vetoed Friday evening most of the bill lawmakers passed in special session to deal with Oklahoma's $215 million budget hole.

Fallin vetoed all but five of the 170 sections in House Bill 1019, passed earlier Friday by the Senate and Wednesday by the House of Representatives.

"House Bill 1019 does not provide a long-term solution to the re-occurring budget deficits, and within three months we will come back facing an estimated $600 million shortfall," Fallin said.

Fallin intends to call a second special session for lawmakers to pass revenue measures.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A former Oklahoma correctional officer has pleaded guilty to using unreasonable force on an inmate during a 2014 incident at a jail in El Reno.

The Oklahoman reports that 41-year-old Jason Barber entered the plea Thursday in federal court in Oklahoma City.

Barber was accused of hitting pretrial detainee Lloyd Wayne Tillman during a disciplinary hearing in December 2014. Prosecutors have classified the offense as a misdemeanor because Tillman didn't suffer "bodily injury."

City of Enid

ENID, Okla. (AP) — A former Oklahoma mayor and bank vice president has been arraigned for his alleged involvement in a fraud scheme.

Ersnt LeRoy Currier, 62, was charged this week with 33 felonies related to $6.2 million in fraudulently obtained loans.

Currier was previously the mayor of Enid and senior vice president of commercial lending at Security National Bank. He resigned from the bank on Sept. 5.

File photo

Like 75 other agencies evaluated, the Tulsa Police Department’s body camera policy doesn’t pass muster with a national civil rights coalition.

The Leadership Conference scorecard said TPD doesn’t meet most of their standards. The standards it does not meet are making the policy publicly and readily available, prohibiting officers from reviewing footage before writing an initial report, limiting the time footage is retained for, protecting footage against tampering and misuse, making footage available to citizens filing complaints, and limiting biometric searching of footage.

Matt Trotter / KWGS

After settling on a "cash and cuts" plan to end the special session, many Oklahoma lawmakers are looking to the regular session as the time to pass revenue bills.

That may be tough.

Tax increases require 75 percent majorities of both chambers, and their relationship is a bit strained after the sudden end of special session. The Senate took action twice in special session trying to get the House to pass revenue measures, first passing a resolution spelling out what a package should include and then amending one that didn't include a gross production tax.

Wikipedia

One of Oklahoma’s most prominent oilmen has a bone to pick with the agency in charge of forecasting U.S. oil production.

Continental Resources founder and chairman Harold Hamm said the U.S. Energy Information Administration is being too optimistic in its growth projections.

"Right or wrong, no other agency provides data with greater impact, so it's crucial for EIA to provide the most accurate energy supply and demand data possible," Hamm said.

Pages