HOUSTON (AP) — Blue Bell Creameries says it will lay off more than a third of its workforce following a series of listeria illnesses linked to its ice cream that prompted a total product recall.
The Texas company, whose production plants remain closed, released a statement Friday saying 750 full-time employees and 700 part-time workers are losing their jobs. That represents about 37 percent of the company's 3,900 employees.
Tulsa's city auditor says she has several concerns after reviewing an independent audit of the Tulsa County Jail's daily rate.
Auditor Cathy Criswell identified around $10 million she doesn't believe should count toward the daily rate calculation.
Mayor Dewey Bartlett plans to take Criswell's findings to county commissioners. He said one issue is $2.2 million in jail depreciation costs were included in the rate calculation, but the county owns the building, not the criminal justice authority.
The head of the Tulsa Area Emergency Management Agency says there's a priority list of areas needing tornado sirens.
Agency director Roger Jolliff told city councilors one place on the list is the intersection of 51st Street and Garnett Road.
"While there's not a lot of residences, it's a high-usage area that people are out in the daytime, they're working, they're moving about," Jolliff said. "Again, this is an outdoor warning system, so we need to be conscious of people who are out and about."
Tulsa city councilors seem to be in agreement that river funding and economic development should go to voters this year, while a public safety tax should wait until next year.
Councilor David Patrick said they need to garner support for these proposals individually.
"I initially liked the idea of putting it all in one election, getting it over with and, you know, trying to pass the whole enchilada," Patrick said. "But, you know, that really is complicated, and so it probably makes sense to have two elections."
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Oklahoma Senate has given unanimous approval to a pair of bills that will end two separate tax subsidies for the wind industry in Oklahoma.
With no debate, the Senate on Friday approved one bill to eliminate a 5-year property tax exemption for wind manufacturers, starting in 2017. Because the state reimburses counties for the revenue lost from the exemption, the cost of the subsidy has skyrocketed with the expansion of wind farms in Oklahoma. It's expected to cost the state about $44 million in the current fiscal year.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Oklahoma Attorney General's Office acknowledges it erred in a court filing with the U.S. Supreme Court in a case involving a challenge to the state's lethal injection formula.
In a letter to the nation's highest court on Wednesday, Oklahoma Solicitor General Patrick Wyrick says he inadvertently cited a letter as having been sent to the Oklahoma Department of Corrections. The letter was actually sent to the Texas Department of Corrections.
HOUSTON (AP) — Blue Bell Creameries has signed agreements with health officials in Texas and Oklahoma requiring the company to inform the states whenever there is a positive test result for listeria in its products or ingredients.
The requirement comes after the company based in Brenham, Texas failed to tell federal or state health officials of repeated findings of listeria at its Oklahoma plant that date back to 2013.