Steele files criminal justice reform bill targeted at reducing crime, costs and prison population (access required)

 A bill filed by House Speaker Kris Steele is aimed at reducing crime, corrections costs and the state’s prison population by enacting a package of criminal justice reforms. “This bill does a lot,” said Steele, R-Shawnee. “But more than anything, ...

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Democrat to challenge Sullivan for First Congressional District (access required)

Tulsa businessman John Olson, a Democrat, announced Monday that he will oppose First District U.S. Rep. John Sullivan in the upcoming 2012 election for that congressional seat. Sullivan, 34, owns a market research and organizational development company, Advantage Business Resources, and ...

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Tribal liaison issue resurfaces from last session (access required)

It was one of the most bitterly debated issues last session and is on the table again this year: abolition of the Indian Affairs Commission and creation of a Native American liaison, for whom one of the qualifications is a ...

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One-shot lobbyist meal rule, proposal for ouster of bad-actor local officials on way to legislature (access required)

An action taken by the state Ethics Commission Friday afternoon—to  allow lobbyists to feed groups of legislators once per session without it counting toward their $100 aggregate limit and without reporting which lawmakers attended—has already drawn the attention of a ...

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Ethics panel approves disclosure proposal for corporate independent-expenditure funds (access required)

Corporations and organizations that set up committees to solicit funds to make independent expenditures during election campaigns—usually to fund ads criticizing political candidates—would be required to disclose the names of donors under a proposal approved Friday by the Oklahoma Ethics ...

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More state agency, program consolidations and pension reforms planned (access required)

House Republicans said Thursday they plan to build on last session’s success by consolidating more state agencies and services and continuing pension reform. “Last year was a watershed moment for us from a fiscal conservative standpoint,” said House Speaker Kris ...

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Proposed House ethics panel rule would allow disciplinary actions to be issued against former members (access required)

Under a proposed jurisdictional rule being considered by the new House Ethics Committee, the panel could review complaints against individuals no longer in the House. The rule would give the committee authority to review alleged violations of the House Code ...

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Sherrer bill aimed at stopping misuse of ‘independent contractor’ worker classification (access required)

A measure filed by Rep. Ben Sherrer, D-Chouteau, is targeted at preventing employers from misclassifying workers as independent contractors to avoid carrying workers’ compensation insurance, as well as payment of unemployment and other taxes. “There are at least two states ...

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State justices turn down Wilson appeal in Senate redistricting plan lawsuit (access required)

For a second time, the Oklahoma Supreme Court turned down Sen. Jim Wilson’s legal challenge to last year’s state Senate redistricting plan on Tuesday. “[T]he district court properly dismissed Senator Wilson’s petition because he has failed to state a claim ...

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