August 25, 2016

Pruitt submits rewritten ballot title for medical

Attorney General Scott Pruitt submitted his office’s rewritten ballot title for State Question 788 on Thursday.               

Pruitt notified the Secretary of State’s Office on August 18 that his office had reviewed the ballot title for proposed State Question 788, which proposes the legalization of medical marijuana, and found the title failed to adequately explain the effect of the proposition. His office had 10 business days, or until September 1, to rewrite it.

“I commend the attorneys in my office for their diligent work to complete this ballot title in an efficient manner,” Pruitt said in a press release Thursday. “While my office has done its part by preparing the ballot title well before the September 1 deadline, there are still steps remaining in order for the question to be placed on a ballot.”

 

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August 25, 2016

More than 40 bills become law Friday

Voters likely will not notice any changes in the voting booth in November as a result of a new law that takes effect Friday. The measure is one of more than 40 bills passed during the 2016 legislative session that take effect 90 days after sine die adjournment.               

SB1108 allows the Secretary of the State Election Board to leave off the names of the presidential electors, those individuals who will participate in the Electoral College, from the presidential ballot. State Election Board Secretary Paul Ziriax said that portion of the bill was requested because of concern that there could have been a large number of presidential candidates and numerous state questions on November’s ballot.               

“We will have three candidates and three sets of electors,” said Ziriax, “so there should be plenty of space to publish those names on this year’s ballot.”

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August 25, 2016

Cleveland pleased with Sheakley’s pending

Rep. Bobby Cleveland said in a statement released Thursday he’s excited for Oklahoma Secondary School Activity Association’s new chapter after the board voted to terminate their contract with Executive Director Ed Sheakley.               

“As a state legislator and someone who has assisted schools, parents and student athletes against the OSSAA, I am excited for a new chapter of the organization,” said Cleveland, R-Slaughterville. “The OSSAA has always been difficult at best to deal with. Hearing new leadership is being set in motion is exciting and a win for all student-athletes in the State of Oklahoma and for the organization itself -- one intended to be for the students.”

 

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August 25, 2016

Advocacy team in the works at OETA

The Oklahoma Educational Television Authority (OETA) alongside the OETA Foundation is in the process of developing a community advocacy team to assist in addressing agency concerns through the legislature.               

OETA Executive Director Dan Schiedel told the agency’s board of directors Tuesday that the team would ideally assist the agency in garnering support for its funding requests amongst legislators and the general public.

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Daphne Dowdy, president and CEO of the OETA Foundation, said in an interview that the purpose of the proposed group would be bringing “fans of public media (or) public television together…so they can help others in leadership positions around the state to understand the incredible return on investment that we have with educational public media for the state of Oklahoma."

 

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August 25, 2016

State Board of Education approves additional 300

Members of the Oklahoma State Board of Education unanimously approved the issuance of 349 emergency certifications Thursday for the month of August. That number is slightly up from the previous month, when the board approved a little over 300 certificates -- a record number for the year in one month.

State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister said that number, however, is down from August of last year where the board was asked to approve over 500 emergency teaching certificates.

 

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August 25, 2016

Zearley: Safety will be jeopardized

The executive director of the state’s association of public employees and retirees said Wednesday night public safety will be jeopardized because politics are forcing potential furloughs at the Department of Public Safety.

               

“Despite the efforts of the men and women at DPS, Oklahomans’ safety will be jeopardized because of politics. Some leaders are engaged in political games rather than finding ways to support public safety. Other services that DPS provides like processing drivers licenses and the support that troopers get from non-uniformed DPS staff will suffer too,” said Sterling Zearley, Oklahoma Public Employees executive director.

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