Washington, D.C. – Parties agree to extension in Indian lawsuit
WASHINGTON (AP) A lead plaintiff for Indian landowners involved in a class-action lawsuit against the government says participants have agreed to extend the deadline for resolving the case until June 15.
Lack of movement on Capitol Hill appeared to place the $3.4 billion settlement in jeopardy. But the House approved it on Friday as part of a package of tax cuts and benefit extensions.
Oklahoma City, OK – Okla. Legislature adjourns regular session
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The Oklahoma Legislature adjourned its 2010 regular session Friday with a focus on the same thorny issue that lawmakers faced when they convened four months ago -- a massive state budget shortfall.
The state House and Senate took up dozens of bills on the Legislature's final day, including several that put the finishing touches on a $6.7 billion budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1st.
Oklahoma City, OK – 3 schools granted waivers after tornadoes
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The state Board of Education has granted waivers to three school districts that ended classes early this school year after tornadoes hit their schools and communities this month.
The board on Thursday granted the exceptions to the Little Axe district in Cleveland County and the Varnum and Butner districts in Seminole County. All were forced to cancel classes after the May 10 tornado outbreak.
WATONGA, Okla. (AP) A private prison that was Watonga's biggest employer has closed, leaving about 300 workers either without jobs or facing transfers to other facilities.
The Diamondback Correctional Facility shipped its last prisoners away on Thursday. The prison opened in 1998 and once housed about 2,000 inmates from Arizona, but Diamondback spokeswoman Sandy Clark says officials in that state decided not to renew contracts with out-of-state prisons.
Oklahoma City, OK – OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) State education officials say Oklahoma schools will face an 8.9 percent funding cut for the upcoming fiscal year, not the 2.9 percent being touted by lawmakers. During a state Board of Education meeting, assistant state superintendent for finance James White said the lower figure was based using an adjusted appropriation figure for March instead of what the Legislature originally promised common education last May for the current fiscal year.
Oklahoma City, OK – Okla. Legislature OKs bill to consolidate agencies
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) A bill to consolidate two state agencies and modify the health care benefits system for state workers is heading to the governor's desk.
The bill approved Thursday in the House and Senate merges the Oklahoma State and Education Employees Group Insurance Board and the Oklahoma Employees Benefits Council into one new agency. The new entity will be called the Oklahoma Health and Wellness Board.