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PM NewsBrief: June 21, 2023

This is the KGOU PM NewsBrief for Wednesday, June 21, 2023.

Turnpike Extension Near Norman Could Take New Path

Oklahoma Turnpike Authority says it’s looking at changing the route of its $5 billion ACCESS Oklahoma project near Norman.

The OTA told the Oklahoma Supreme Court that the South Extension turnpike route could change to secure approval from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.

That agency denied OTA’s request to build a toll road around Lake Thunderbird in January.

It’s unclear ultimately where the road will go.

The court had also questioned the OTA’s financing arrangement for the project. The agency is using bonds to pay for future construction.

OTA had let their approval from a state oversight council lapse, which justices questioned. However, the agency argues it doesn’t need to have full approval prior to working out its case before the Supreme Court.

Price Hike For Norman School Lunches

School lunches in Norman are going cost more next year.

The Norman Board of Education voted Tuesday to increase the price of school lunches for families by ten cents.

The district says the price hike is necessary to remain compliant with federal regulations.

School lunches in Norman have gone up a dime every year since 2015.

Elementary students will now pay $3.10. Secondary students will pay $3.25.

The district says free or reduced priced lunches are available for families who qualify.

Tulsa:  Got Gas?

As Northeast Oklahoma continues to recover from this weekend’s violent storms, Tulsa residents are having problems finding gas for their vehicles.

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum says power was down at the city’s fuel distribution terminals, and there wasn’t an emergency waiver to power them with generators at first.

Now those terminals have electricity again. Bynum says residents should have an easier time filling their cars.

“The main gap between you and getting all the fuel that you want is just we need time for those tanker trucks to get out there to the terminals and transport that fuel from the terminals to stores and gas stations all over the Tulsa metro. But the fuel is there,” Bynum said.

All main roads are open in the city, but Bynum says some Tulsa County roads are still blocked by downed trees and power lines.

OKC PrideFest Festivities and Parade This Weekend

Pride month festivitieswill celebrate LGBTQ+ people in Oklahoma City this weekend.

Floats filled with community members, performers and rainbows will travel through downtown OKC in the Pride Alliance Parade Sunday.

President of the Oklahoma City Pride Alliance Kylan Durant says the theme is Queer Joy, the resistance.

“I think after this year of unimaginable legislative attacks against our community, both in the state and around the country, we believe that queer joy is resistance,” Durant said.

Durant says the purpose is simple: support queer people.

“Having affirming spaces, which we are creating in downtown OKC improves that mental health. So, that’s why we put on this three-day festival and parade,” Durant said.

The hour-long parade will begin Sunday at 11 a.m. by the OKC Museum of Art.

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