Local & Regional


Oklahoma City, OK – Voters approve jails in 2 counties

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Voters have approved new jails in two Oklahoma counties.

Washita County residents voted in favor of a three-quarter-cent sales tax that will go toward building a new jail and renovating the current one.

In Washington County, voters passed a measure that will create a quarter-cent sales tax for a new county jail there.

Elsewhere, a proposal to fund a new ambulance in Seiling passed.

Tulsa, OK – Tulsa sales tax revenue falls 7.5 percent in June

TULSA, Okla. (AP) Sales tax revenue for the city of Tulsa continues to decline with a drop of 7.5 percent in June.

The city received nearly $1.3 million less than in June last year.

The City Council is currently considering a budget for next year that must be approved by June 23.

Last week Mayor Kathy Taylor presented $7.6 million in budget cuts for next fiscal year that include eight unpaid furlough days for all 4,000 city employees.


Okemah, OK – OKEMAH, Okla. (AP) Law enforcement officials pleaded today for the public's help in finding the killer or killers of two Weleetka girls on the anniversary of the shootings.

Thirteen-year-old Taylor Paschal-Placker and 11-year-old Skyla Whitaker were found shot to death a year ago today on a rural road near Weleetka.

Oklahoma City, OK – Over the course of the next three days more than 80 paintings belonging to the State Senate Art Collection will be removed from the state Capitol. The artwork is being transported to the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, where it will be displayed from July through October.

Dr. Duane King, Executive Director of the Gilcrease Museum, said the collection is an extraordinary reflection of the state's culture.

Tulsa, OK – TULSA, Okla. (AP) Attorney General Drew Edmondson says a now-defunct poultry company got a better deal in settling an environmental lawsuit with the state because it was first to negotiate an agreement.

Springfield, Mo.-based Willow Brook Foods Inc. was originally one of the 13 companies named in Oklahoma's 2005 environmental lawsuit alleging bird waste pollution in the Illinois River watershed.

Oklahoma City, OK – State graduation rate exceeds national average

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Oklahoma's high school graduation rate fell slightly from 2005 to 2006 but remains ahead of the national average.

The 2009 "Diplomas Count" report released today shows nearly 71 percent of public high school students graduated in Oklahoma in 2006 the most recent year in which data is available.

That compares to about 69 percent nationally.


Tulsa, OK – Stimulus money helps Tulsa bus conversion

TULSA, Okla. (AP) Tulsa's public transportation system plans to use federal stimulus funds to convert a large portion of its fleet from diesel-powered buses to ones that run on compressed natural gas.

The $13 million project will switch out 13 of the Tulsa Transit's 62 long buses and all 35 of the Lift Program's paratransit mini buses.

Oklahoma City, OK – First Okla swine flu death reported

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) A 43-year-old man from Kay County has become the first person to die in Oklahoma of swine flu.

State health officials say the patient had sought medical care for his flu symptoms but had not been hospitalized. He did have underlying chronic medical conditions, including asthma.

A total of 109 cases of swine flu have been confirmed in the state.

Denver, CO – DENVER (AP) A federal appeals court in Denver ruled today that a Ten Commandments monument outside the Haskell County, Oklahoma, courthouse endorses religion.

A three-judge panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the monument has the primary effect of endorsing religion when taken in context with the Stigler, where it sits.

Kiwanis Club of Tulsa

Tulsa, OK – Miss Oklahoma ready for reign

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The newly crowned Miss Oklahoma says judges who selected her over 41 other contestants in the statewide pageant were looking for more than just a pretty face.

Taylor Treat talked with reporters Sunday, a day after the 21-year-old was crowned Miss Oklahoma 2009 and given the opportunity to represent the state in the Miss America pageant in January.

Tulsa, OK – Dangers increase for state road crews

TULSA, Okla. (AP) Dangers are expected to increase for Oklahoma transportation crews as road and bridge projects funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act get under way.

The number of work zone accidents causing an injury or fatality in Oklahoma has increased almost every year since 2003, records show.

Jim Inhofe

Tulsa, OK – Inhofe remarks on Obama speech criticized

TULSA, Okla. (AP) The head of the Oklahoma Democratic Party is criticizing U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe for describing President Barack Obama's speech in Egypt as "un-American."

Party chairman Todd Goodman told the Tulsa World's Washington bureau that Inhofe prefers to smear Obama rather than address important facts about the president's address in Cairo on Thursday.

U-tube Video

Tulsa, OK – No charges planned over scuffle

TULSA, Okla. (AP) A prosecutor has decided not to file charges in a physical confrontation between a state trooper and a paramedic in Okfuskee County.

Max Cook, district attorney for Creek and Okfuskee counties, said Friday that after reviewing reports and talking to witnesses, it would not be appropriate to file charges against either the trooper, Daniel Martin, or the paramedic, Maurice White Jr.

City of Tulsa/University of Tulsa

Oklahoma City, OK – Starting on Monday, June 8, more than 80 paintings that are part of the State Senate Art Collection will be taken off the State Capitol walls to be shipped to the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa. The collection will be on display at the museum from July through October.

David Moss Correction Center-Booking photo

Tula, ok – Prosecutors mull death penalty in case

TULSA, Okla. (AP) The Tulsa County District Attorney says a man accused of fatally shooting a Tulsa businessman could face the death penalty.

Twenty-three-year-old Terrico Bethel was charged yesterday with first-degree murder in the Sept. 4 death of Neal Sweeney at Sweeney's company, Retail Fuels Marketing.

DA Tim Harris said today the case would meet the legal threshold for the death penalty if Bethel is convicted of taking money in exchange for the killing.


Tulsa, OK – Walking the Halls of the U.S. Senate office building is Court of Appeals Second District Judge Sonia Sotomayor. As President Obama's nominee to the U-S Supreme Court, she is allowing Senators to get a chance to know her prior to her confirmation hearing. Today, we hear from someone who already knows the Judge well. Dr. Robert Spoo is an associate professor of law at the University of Tulsa. In 2001-and 2002, he served as a clerk in Judge Sotomayor's chamber.

U.S. Department of Energy

Oklahoma City – OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Oklahoma Indian leaders are being encouraged to consider wind power especially for tribal casinos, medical clinics and administrative projects.

Speakers at a Sovereignty Symposium in Oklahoma City say wind turbines could be a clean, cost-effective way of providing electricity.

Osage tribal member and Chermac Energy Corporation president Jaime McAlpine says wind projects would also create tribal jobs.

Oklahoma City, OK – Slight revenue shortfall declared in Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) State Treasurer Scott Meacham has declared a slight revenue shortfall for Oklahoma but says the affect on most state agencies will be minimal.

Meacham said today that revenue collections for May were $357.1 million, or about 21.8 percent below estimates. That means state agencies will receive 1.42 percent less in their June allocations.


Tulsa, OK – It was a split vote, but the Tulsa City Council has approved an assessment fee to finance the new baseball park in downtown Tulsa. The vote was 5-to-4. The 6 1/2 cent per square foot fee is for all property inside the IDL with the exception of churches, the federal government and homes with homestead exemption. It is expected the fee will raise $25 million to help finance the ballpark.


Tulsa, OK – "Don't trust anyone over 30." That was the cry from youth of turbulent 1960s.

Sapulpa, OK – Paragon to lay off workers in Sapulpa, Muskogee

SAPULPA, Okla. (AP) Pipe maker Paragon Industries is announcing plans to lay off 105 employees from its plants in Sapulpa and Muskogee.

Company officials say cheap steel pipe being imported from China makes it difficult to compete. Paragon makes steel pipe for the oil and construction industries.

The layoffs will begin in mid-July and involve 90 production workers and 15 support staff members, About 10 of the layoffs will be at the plant in Muskogee.

The Kiwanis Club of Tulsa

Tulsa, OK – Miss Oklahoma preliminaries continue

TULSA, Okla. (AP) Miss University of Oklahoma has picked up a $1,000 cash scholarship in the talent competition on the second preliminary night of the 2009 Miss Oklahoma pageant.

Twenty-one-year-old Taylor Treat of Ada performed ballet on pointe to "Palladio" last night. Treat is a senior human relations major at the university.

KWGS News/click photo to enlarage

Tulsa, OK – TULSA, Okla. (AP) Tulsa police say a a man was charged today with first-degree murder in what police call a contract killing of Tulsa businessman Neal Sweeney.

Meanwhile, investigators say they're still looking for the person who hired the killer.

Police Chief Ron Palmer says 23-year-old Terrico Dion Bethel is charged with the September 4 crime. Bethel has been in jail since February 27 on unrelated charges.


Tulsa, OK – TULSA, Okla. (AP) Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor says she's not running for re-election this fall so she can focus on guiding the city through turbulent economic times.

Taylor told those gathered at the Tulsa Press Club that she loves being mayor and doesn't want to have to run a political campaign while helping Tulsa cope with falling sales tax revenues and the effect it will have on municipal government. Her announcement was supposed to officially come tomorrow.


Tulsa, OK – Shipping levels for the first four months of this year, ending April 30th, were almost identical to the same time frame in 2008. The figures quiet some speculation that the condition of the global economy would cause a drastic reduction in business at the Tulsa Port of Catoosa.

Cumulative inbound/outbound shipping from January to April, 2009 was 874,658 tons compared with 876,096 tons for the same period last year.

Frontier Airlines

Tulsa, OK – Frontier Airlines to resume Tulsa-Denver flights

DENVER (AP) Frontier Airlines plans to resume daily flights between its hub at Denver International Airport and Tulsa, Okla., beginning Aug. 2.

Frontier began flying to Tulsa in May 2005 but stopped as it reduced capacity in 2008.

Its Lynx Aviation subsidiary will provide service.

Frontier has been working to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.

Disney Channel

Tulsa, Ok – Miley Cyrus today announced her 2009 North American Tour, presented by Walmart, and promoted by AEG Live. The 45-show tour, featuring special guest Metro Station, launches September 14, 2009 in Portland, OR and will play in several major cities including Los Angeles, New York City, Dallas, Chicago, New Orleans and more before wrapping in Miami on December 2nd.

She will make a Tulsa concert stop on October 12th at the Tulsa BOK Center. Tickets will cost between $42 and $82.


Bixby, OK – The Creek Nation appears to be moving forward with plans to construct a bridge connecting Jenks and Bixby with South Tulsa. The proposed bridge would span the Arkansas River opening the South County area to development. Right now the nearest bridges across the river are at Memorial Drive in Bixby and at 96th Street in Jenks.

Oklahoma City, OK – Turnpike Authority to stop automatic violations

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The Oklahoma Turnpike Authority will stop issuing automatic tickets for failure to pay tolls until it matches its records with new license plate numbers.

Violations were automatically generated by a computer system that manages the toll system.

Errors occurred when a Pikepass was misread and the computer couldn't match the photographed license plate number to an active Pikepass account.


Tulsa, OK – After walking out two weeks ago, Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor goes again before City Council members to discuss the budget. She is proposing another $7.6-million dollars worth of cuts.

Hear her comments unedited/unfiltered.