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Sexual assault survivors will be able to keep track of the location and status of their rape kits with the state's new tracking system, but what happens with the more than 7,200 untested kits already sitting in evidence rooms?

Public education dominated much of the discussion inside the Oklahoma Capitol since teachers packed the halls during a statewide walkout during the legislative session in 2018.

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THUMBS UP to the Eastern Oklahoma Development District Area Agency on Aging for their successful food drive to benefit the elderly residents of our community.

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Oklahoma's state parks are among its sparkling jewels. With poor health, low-paying jobs, and bad records on smoking, teen pregnancy and about every other negative measure, Oklahoma can still claim some of the most beautiful, unspoiled recreational spots in the country. And they belong to th…

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A state representative's proposed legislation involving children's seat belt safety is a good idea, but it lacks the teeth required to make sure violators get the message.

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Recent reports about qualified teachers in Oklahoma who choose to work somewhere other than our public schools prompted a debate about the need to extend the state's reliance on emergency certification — that would be a mistake. 

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THUMBS UP to Joseph’s Storehouse, for providing residents in need with another outlet to find food. 

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The latest attempt at getting recreational marijuana on the ballot was withdrawn. We’ve seen a couple of those attempts fail in infancy, but this one never really had a chance. It was doomed from the start for one very important reason – it didn’t even have the support from the burgeoning me…

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A new federal law that raises the minimum age to buy tobacco products to age 21 has some Oklahomans excited, but we can't see that it will have any impact.

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It was disheartening to read this past week allegations that one of the top home insurance companies in Oklahoma submitted false and confidential information about claims filed by homeowners who filed claims related to tornadoes that swept through the state in 2013. 

Gov. Kevin Stitt struck the appropriate tone after learning there will be little new revenue to work with as he begins to craft a budget he will present to the Oklahoma Legislature when it convenes in February.

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With Christmas one day away, we pause to remember our blessings and to remember that Christmas is about giving and sharing.

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Notice of termination for unpaid taxes sounds harsh at first glance, but thousands of state workers who are behind on paying taxes on their income now face that risk if they don't resolve those matters.

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Thumbs up to Warner schools whose students collected 9,000 items of food during their annual Christmas drive. 

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Muskogee Board of Education's $3 million purchase of land from Bacone College seems like a logical solution to a couple of problems — finding a place for Muskogee High School's new sports facilities to be built, and for Bacone, financial issues will be eased.

Gov. Kevin Stitt made the right move on Tuesday when he tapped the brakes on his demands to renegotiate the terms of all tribal gaming compacts before the year ends.

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Many people are absolutely giddy when it comes to Christmas. But not everyone feels like celebrating if they have lost a loved one in the past year, have a loved one in the military who is not able to be home for the holidays, or if they are simply lonely.

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THUMBS UP to Refresco for its plan to add 75 jobs and invest almost $12 million at the Fort Gibson bottling plant.

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The Federal Communications Commission is a step closer to making it easier for people who are considering taking their own lives to find help.

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In theory, Oklahomans vote for politicians whom they can count on to represent their interests at the statehouse. In practice, though, many lawmakers have been inclined to represent their own best interests, and those of their key donors.

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Muskogee's Salvation Army needs help from people who are purchasing gifts for names chosen from a Salvation Army Angel Tree. The deadline is near, but not all of the gifts have been turned in.

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Thumbs up to the Muskogee City Council and the dedicated city employees who made some difficult decisions the past few years to restore financial stability at City Hall. 

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The Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program was created in 2001, and when Gov. Kevin Stitt signed Senate Bill 200 earlier this year, it ensured films made in Oklahoma will receive 35-27 percent rebates through 2027.

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A lackluster response to a pay raise approved earlier this year for state corrections workers prompted another proposal intended to lure applicants for hundreds of positions that remain unfilled.

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A purchase of real estate by Port of Muskogee officials will complete the John T. Griffin Industrial Park and hopefully result in more jobs for Muskogee residents soon.

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Thumbs up to the group of people who showed up to help tidy up Centennial Trail last Saturday. 

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Tomorrow is Small Business Saturday in Oklahoma. The day is dedicated to shopping locally owned businesses.

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Gov. Kevin Stitt should set an example and take steps now to grant the consent required from states and local governments to help with the resettlement of the world's growing number of refugees.

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Overwhelming support among Oklahomans for the long overdue expansion of Medicaid coverage in this state seems to have instilled a little fear in those who have blocked access to comprehensive health care to those who can least afford it.

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Thumbs up to the Salvation Army for the annual Angel Tree program and all of the businesses who are kind enough to allow a tree to be put up at their establishments.

As the public impeachment inquiry drags on, many local residents — at least, those who don't have to work during the day or at all — are complaining about missing their TV shows. Many readers indicated they wouldn't be watching, because whatever their position, the spectacle of politicians r…

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Many people struggle to come up with unique gift ideas for loved ones each year. But, if you use tobacco products, the best gift you can give is to quit.

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A decision by lawyers representing the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority considers the addresses of dispensaries “private business information” the agency should shield from public disclosure is ludicrous and must be reconsidered and reversed.

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Thumbs up to the Cherokee Nation and the Indian Health Service on the opening of the new health center on the W.W. Hastings Hospital campus in Tahlequah.

This Week's Circulars

Obituaries

88, Homemaker. Died January 15, 2020. The Visitation is 5:00-7:00 pm Monday. The Funeral service is at 1:00 pm Tuesday at the Kingdom Hall, 1102 North Pierce Avenue, Wagoner. Mallett Funeral Home and Crematory.

87, formerly of Muskogee, Real Estate Broker, died Friday 12/27/2019. Memorial service, 10AM Tuesday, 01/21/2020 at Clifford D Garrett Family Funeral Home Chapel, Fort Gibson. Clifford D Garrett Family Funeral Home. Online condolences clifforddgarrettfamilyfh.com

87, formerly of Muskogee, Real Estate Broker, died Friday 12/27/2019. Memorial service, 10AM Tuesday, 01/21/2020 at Clifford D Garrett Family Funeral Home Chapel, Fort Gibson. Clifford D Garrett Family Funeral Home. Online condolences clifforddgarrettfamilyfh.com