OKLAHOMA CITY - Citing "an obvious conflict of interest," a Senate leader has formally asked the state corrections board to reject a prison consultant recommended by Governor Keating when it holds its regular monthly meeting tomorrow. Senator Cal Hobson officially raised his objection in a letter to each member of the seven-member prison panel today.read more.
Saying he is concerned about the appearance of a conflict of interest, a Senate leader is urging the corrections board to look to a more objective source to conduct a study of the Oklahoma prison system. Governor Keating has said a friend of his in the private prison industry will do the study for free.read more.
Saying he's concerned that justice is not being served in an ongoing corrections probe, a Senate leader is urging a special panel investigating the Lamont Fields release to resist pressure to reach a preconceived conclusion and expand its probe to include Governor Keating's office.
"Judging from the reports I've heard, this so-called investigation has been pretty well orchestrated with one goal in mind," said Senator Larry Dickerson, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government and Transportation.read more.
A newly appointed interim committee will begin its study of the Oklahoma turnpike system with a thorough examination of Governor Keating's toll road expansion program, namely the answers to a number of questions posed by the Executive and Legislative Bond Oversight Commissions at a meeting last month.read more.
A member of the Legislative Bond Oversight Commission has submitted a partial list of questions to the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority today, asking it to substantiate some of the projections associated with Governor Keating's turnpike expansion program.
"It's my understanding the OTA board is going to discuss the Keating toll road program at its meeting this week and I think it's only appropriate that members have at least some of our questions in hand for that discussion," said Senator Larry Dickerson, a member of the Legislative Bond Oversight Commission.read more.
OKLAHOMA CITY -A Senate leader is warning Governor Keating not to force a "rush to judgment" on corrections chief Larry Fields, saying an immediate ouster would confirm suspicions that the Governor is just looking for a scapegoat in the triple homicide involving an inmate on early release.
"It's pretty obvious that Governor Keating is trying to avoid any responsibility in this tragedy and he's using Larry Fields as a scapegoat to accomplish that goal," said Senator Larry Dickerson, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government and Transportation.read more.
Statement from Senator Cal Hobson, Vice-chairman Senate Appropriations Committee
OKLAHOMA CITY -"I'm glad that Mr. Roark and the rest of the corrections board have decided to take a mature, reasoned approach to this difficult situation, instead of making a rush to judgment as some have advocated. I sincerely hope that the board is entering this inquiry with an open mind, instead of pursuing a preconceived conclusion to satisfy Governor Keating's quest for a scapegoat."read more.
Saying recent statements by Governor Keating are misleading, a Senate budget leader is asking the Governor to substantiate his claim that a diversion of motor vehicle fee revenue will have "no impact" on education or other entities that currently receive the money.
"I'm afraid Governor Keating is trying to play Santa Claus. He's promising to hand out presents to everyone without hurting anyone," said Senator Kelly Haney, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. "I wish we could do that, but in our world of limited resources, it's just not possible."read more.
A state Senator has asked Governor Frank Keating to dismiss the State Bond Advisor after reading a letter in which State Bond Advisor Jim Joseph appears to endorse a specific bond underwriter currently seeking to underwrite a new bond in the state.
Senator Dave Herbert, D-Midwest City, refers to a letter Joseph wrote in response to questions from David Hinkle, senior vice-president of the Oklahoma Development Finance Authority, about an ongoing Securities and Exchange Commission investigation ) of a specific bond underwriting firm.read more.
Senator Gene Stipe has become the second Oklahoma State Senator ever to receive the National Rifle Association's "Defender of Freedom" award for his "long-standing record as a defender of the Second Amendment." The special award was presented to Stipe in a ceremony last Friday.
"Senator Stipe has been a long time supporter of the right to keep and bear arms and we look forward to his continued support on behalf of Oklahoma's gun owners," said Tanya K. Metaksa, executive director of the NRA's Institute for Legislative Action.read more.