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AM NewsBrief: Aug. 16, 2022

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This is the KGOU AM NewsBrief for Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2022.

Stitt names new energy and environment secretary

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt has appointed a new Secretary of Energy and Environment. The incoming secretary has a long history in the oil and gas industry.

Following the announcement last week of current Energy and Environment Secretary Ken Wagner’s resignation, Gov. Stitt announced Wagner will be replaced with Ken McQueen, a former National Energy Policy Advisor and Regional Administrator at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

McQueen’s resume also includes serving as the New Mexico Secretary of Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources, during which time the state became the third largest crude oil producer in the country. He also worked for the Williams Company for 10 years, as well as other oil production companies.

Wagner will continue serving as secretary until Sept. 3. In his resignation letter, he wrote he felt a sense of accomplishment in knowing that Oklahoma’s environment is “constantly improving, and that the energy innovation and production that happens in Oklahoma is making the world cleaner, more affordable and more secure.”

OKCPS bond issue to go before voters in November

The largest bond in the history of Oklahoma City Public Schools will be on the Nov. 8 ballot.

The Oklahoman reports the district board Monday unanimously called for the bond election.

Now, the nearly $1 billion bond package rests with district residents.

The two propositions would build five new schools, a regional stadium, classroom expansions and renovations along with new school buses and vehicles.

The bond package, which would increase property taxes for district residents, would require 60% approval from voters to pass.

Backpack safety tips

As school starts back up, medical experts have some tips for preventing injuries at school, but there is a risk that might be overlooked.

SSM Health, which runs Saint Anthony and several other hospitals in Oklahoma, issued some guidance for keeping kids safe from backpack-related pain. Bags that are too heavy — or that are carried wrong — can lead to back and neck pain, as well as posture issues.

The guidance recommends limiting weight to less than 15% of the child’s body weight. It says that bags should be no wider than their torso, and it shouldn’t hang more than a few inches below their waist. And it might not look cool, but kids should always use both shoulder straps, and even chest or waist straps if the bag has them.

DA Allan Grub resigns

District Attorney Allan Grubb announced his resignation late last week.

Although he has just a few months of his term left, Pottawatomie and Lincoln county DA Allan Grubb is stepping down effective Sept. 30 following accusations of corruption from the state’s multicounty jury.

Grubb, who lost his reelection in the June 28 Republican primary, has been under investigation by the jury as well as the state auditor and bureau of investigations for months regarding his finances and his use of deferred prosecution agreements to generate revenue for his office.

The jury’s accusation is not an indictment and Grubb is not facing any criminal charges.

His voluntary suspension with pay began last week.

Oklahoma universities in the top 15 on AP Top 25 Football Poll

The Associated Press released its Top 25 College Football Poll Monday.

The AP’s poll ranks the Oklahoma Sooners No. 9 on the list. The Oklahoma State Cowboys are at No. 12. No. 1 on the poll is Alabama.

The AP poll, which started in 1936, is a weekly ranking of the top teams in college football that's voted on by 63 sports writers and broadcasters from across the country.

The Sooners start off their season against UTEP on Sept. 3. The Cowboys kick off their season against Central Michigan on Sept. 1.

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