• WalletHub ranks Tulsa No. 2 city nationally to start a business

    BY ROD WALTON, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Apr 28, 2015

    Access to capital, quarters and encouragement apparently make Tulsa an ideal location for entrepreneurs. The city ranked as the second-best place in the U.S. to start a business, according to an analysis by financial website WalletHub released Monday. The report, which ranks 150 cities on factors such as access to resources and business environment, ranked Shreveport, Louisiana, at the top of the list. In the top five behind Tulsa were Springfield, Missouri; Chattanooga, Tennessee; and Jackson, Mississippi. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Oklahoma Geological Survey closing Leonard seismic observatory out of cost concerns

    BY RANDY KREHBIEL, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Apr 28, 2015

    LEONARD — After more than a half-century recording the state's every shimmy and shake, the Leonard Geophysical Observatory will close this summer, Oklahoma Geological Survey Interim Director Rick Andrews confirmed recently. "The Leonard Geophysical laboratory is a very old facility," Andrews said by telephone. "The cost savings (from closing it) are very significant." Built in 1961 by the Jersey Production Research Co., a subsidiary of what was then Standard Oil Co., the facility in far southeast Tulsa County was once among the most advanced seismic observatories in the world. For most of the 1990s, it was even used by the Soviet Union to monitor the United States' nuclear testing. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Senate sends anti-EPA bill to governor's desk

    BY BARBARA HOBEROCK, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Apr 28, 2015

    The Oklahoma Senate on Tuesday sent Gov. Mary Fallin a bill touted as a means to challenge a pollution rule by the Environmental Protection Agency. The Senate accepted House amendments Senate Bill 676, by Sen. Greg Treat, R-Oklahoma City, by vote of 38-7, sending it to Fallin’s desk. The measure sets up a process for the state to develop a plan to comply with a new EPA rule that requires states to reduce carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Oklahoma teacher follows through on vow to not test first-graders, risks termination

    BY ANDREA EGER, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Apr 28, 2015

    Judgment day has come for a first-grade teacher who made national headlines in the fall for calling out Tulsa Public Schools on the use of high-stakes student surveys and tests. Skelly Elementary School’s Nikki Jones penned a blog on Monday about her final showdown with her superiors over the issue. “In January, they docked me for not giving the test. I got a second chance, and I didn’t give the test Monday, so they could terminate me,” Jones told the Tulsa World after school ended. “The retaliation began right away last fall from my principal and ILD (instructional leadership director).” Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Fortune ranks Williams Cos. as No. 1 most admired U.S. energy company

    FROM TULSA WORLD STAFF REPORTS | Published: Thu, Apr 23, 2015

    Fortune magazine has ranked Tulsa-based Williams Cos. Inc. as the Most Admired Company among U.S. energy companies in 2015. "This award validates the strong commitment of our employees to focus on doing the right thing and propelling the company forward,” said Williams' CEO Alan Armstrong, in a written statement. “In the last four years, Williams has made great strides executing on our natural gas-focused business strategy, creating value for shareholders and building relationships in the communities where our employees live and work.” Companies considered for the Fortune lists were ranked on nine key attributes of reputation including innovation, people management, use of corporate assets, social responsibility, quality of management, financial soundness, long-term investment value, quality of products/services and global competitiveness. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Number of chronically homeless in Tulsa declines for third straight year

    BY MIKE AVERILL, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Apr 23, 2015

    Tulsa has had a three-year decline in its number of chronically homeless, according to the Tulsa City-County Continuum of Care Point-in-Time Survey completed in 2015. Meanwhile, the number of situationally homeless has continued to increase, up 50 percent from the count done in 2008, the latest study found. The number of chronically homeless, defined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development as someone who has been continuously homeless for one full year or four times within the past three years and has a disability, surveyed during the count was 89, down from 99 last year and 114 two years ago, a 22 percent decrease. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Conspiracy theories fly around Tulsa's suddenly shuttered Wal-Mart

    BY ROBERT EVATT, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Apr 23, 2015

    From crime to labor issues to an intricate military coup of the entire United States, conspiracy theories are flying around the closed Wal-Mart supercenters in Tulsa and elsewhere. The official reason for the sudden closure of the store at Admiral Place and Memorial Drive last week was two years of plumbing issues which would take six months to fix. That was the same reason given for each of the four other Wal-Mart locations, which all closed at the same time with just a few hours' notice. The other stores are in Brandon, Florida; Pico Rivera, California; Midland, Texas; and Livingston, Texas. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • National report confirms that Oklahoma is at greater risk of earthquakes

    BY MICHAEL OVERALL, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Apr 23, 2015

    Oklahoma features prominently in a new report on the risk of manmade earthquakes, with parts of the state shaking more often than quake-prone California, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Scientists have identified 17 areas across eight sates with increased rates of "induced seismicity," or earthquakes triggered by human activity. But no area has seen the risk increase as much as central Oklahoma, according to Thursday's report. Seismic activity is 600 times greater now than before 2008. People who live in central Oklahoma didn't need a report from the federal government to tell them that the ground has been trembling more often, but this new risk assessment from the U.S Geological Survey could have a significant impact on the area. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Attorneys demand Tulsa County sheriff release report on 2009 investigation of reserve deputy

    BY JARREL WADE, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Apr 23, 2015

    Attorneys for the family of the man slain when a Tulsa County Sheriff's Office reserve deputy mistook a gun for a Taser demanded the results of a prior internal investigation into the deputy, according to a statement released Thursday.  A CBS News report  Wednesday night alleged that a 2009 internal investigation by the Sheriff’s Office showed that reserve deputy and insurance company executive Robert Bates received preferential treatment from high-ranking officers and proof that he received proper training as a reserve was “questionable.” Bates is charged with second-degree manslaughter in the fatal shooting of Eric Harris after an undercover gun buy April 2. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Johnny Depp unrecognizable as Whitey Bulger in new film with Tulsa connections

    BY MICHAEL SMITH, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Apr 22, 2015

    Johnny Depp is playing one of the most feared American gangsters: Whitey Bulger, the ruthless Boston boss who committed murders and ordered the deaths of many, including Roger Wheeler following a round of golf at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa in 1981. On Tuesday night at Cinemacon — an annual showcase for movie theater executives/owners of what studios have to offer for the year, and often full of film clips — the audience was quite taken with images of Depp as Bulger. Check out one of the images here. “Black Mass” is scheduled for a September release in theaters, directed by Scott Cooper (“Crazy Heart”) and co-starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Joel Edgerton, Dakota Johnson, Sienna Miller and many more. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • The May 1 Bedlam baseball game at ONEOK Field a near sellout

    BY ERIC BAILEY, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Apr 22, 2015

    Bedlam continues to be a hot ticket at ONEOK Field. All reserved seating for the May 1 game between Oklahoma and Oklahoma State has been sold. The only tickets remaining are general admission lawn seats, which cost $8. Tickets are available at ONEOK Field or at tulsadrillers.com . Tulsa Drillers general manager Mike Melega said he expects about 9,000 fans at this year’s game, which has been the average Bedlam attendance the previous four seasons. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Oklahoma attorney surrenders law license amid bar association probe

    BY CURTIS KILLMAN, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Apr 22, 2015

    A Tulsa attorney has surrendered his law license, effectively halting an Oklahoma Bar Association probe into allegations involving his acceptance of over $1 million in gifts and loans from an elderly client. Jasen Elias, who also goes by the name Jasen Corns, surrendered his law license and resigned from the bar March 13, according to an Oklahoma Supreme Court order published April 11 in the Oklahoma Bar Journal. The resignation came about two years after a guardian for Elizabeth Stambaugh filed a complaint with the Bar Association claiming that Elias violated his professional duties and his oath as an attorney, records show. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Oklahoma House, Senate send bills targeting same-sex marriage to governor

    BY RANDY KREHBIEL, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Apr 22, 2015

    The Oklahoma House and Senate both overwhelmingly passed and sent to the governor largely symbolic bills targeting same-sex marriage. Senate Bill 788 , by Sen. Dan Newberry, R-Tulsa, and House Bill 1007 , by Rep. David Brumbaugh, R-Broken Arrow, say people authorized to perform marriages may refuse to do so on religious grounds. Legal experts say such a right already exists, although in a few cases businesses have been charged with violating public accommodation laws and ordinances for refusing to serve same-sex couples. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Man jailed after allegedly pulling gun during midtown road rage confrontation

    BY KENDRICK MARSHALL, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Apr 21, 2015

    A 24-year-old Tulsa man was taken into custody by Tulsa police after he was accused of pointing a gun at a motorist during a confrontation. Randy Glen Grutze, 24, was booked into the Tulsa Jail on a complaint of pointing a deadly weapon, jail records show. Officers were called about 6:25 p.m. Monday to the area of 15th Street and Yale Avenue after Grutze was accused by a motorist of pointing a gun at him after he inadvertently cut in front of Grutze's vehicle, police said. Read the rest of this story Tulsa World.com.

  • Tulsa police investigate shots fired into home of Legislature candidate

    BY KENDRICK MARSHALL, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Apr 21, 2015

    Police are investigating after someone fired shots at the north Tulsa home of a state House candidate. Jonathan Townsend, a member of the Young Adults Committee of the state’s NAACP branch and a candidate for the House District 73 seat, was at his home in the 3900 block of North Lansing Avenue with his girlfriend, mother, father and brother when he heard shots about 8:30 p.m. Sunday, according to Charity Marcus, Townsend's campaign manager. Townsend said the home's occupants dived to the floor after a bullet entered the living room.  A second shot, he said, went through a bedroom window, narrowly missing his brother. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Shifting gears: With new 77,000-square-foot facility, Melton Truck Lines is poised for growth

    BY CASEY SMITH, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Apr 21, 2015

    Melton Truck Lines is finally all moved into its brand new 77,000-square-foot headquarters in east Tulsa. In addition to new features like a state-of-the-art gym and a restaurant packed with healthy options, the three-story facility offers the once-cramped Melton space to accommodate a planned doubling in size over the next decade. “I’d always preferred to put our money in trucks and trailers, but it was time to build for our future,” said Bob Peterson, president of the long-haul trucking company that specializes in flatbed trailers. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Bixby native makes his living off the music fans hear at the ballgame

    BY JIMMIE TRAMEL, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Apr 21, 2015

    Danny Murphy isn’t a doctor. But he once prescribed heavy doses of George Jones, Waylon Jennings, Merle Haggard and Hank Williams Jr. — and it “cured” a department store. Murphy was freshly armed with a marketing degree from the University of Tulsa when he went to work for a record distributor in the 1980s. He said he handled Wal-Mart stores in this part of Oklahoma, and music sales at a rural store were “horrendously bad.” “I couldn’t figure out what was going on,” Murphy recalled during a recent interview. “Then it dawned on me that the product mix was way, way off.” Solution? Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Tulsa Jail breaks ground on pods for inmates with mental health needs, juveniles

    BY GINNIE GRAHAM, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Apr 20, 2015

    A little upturned dirt signifies change for the Tulsa Jail, especially for those with mental health disorders. County commissioners, sheriff’s officials and a host of other dignitaries watched as ground was broken Monday on a jail addition that includes specially designed pods for people suffering from mental illness. “Nationally, jails have become the largest facilities for mental health institutions,” County Commissioner Ron Peters said. “We are dedicated to helping those with mental health issues improve.” Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Deputy's gun not on approved list or qualifying logs

    BY ZIVA BRANSTETTER, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Apr 20, 2015

    Training records released Saturday do not show that Tulsa County Reserve Deputy Robert Bates qualified on a revolver he carried during a fatal shooting and his gun was not on the list of firearms deputies can carry on duty. New training records for Bates surfaced Saturday, when his attorney gave 65 pages of records to national media outlets. Many of the new training records are time sheets signed by Maj. Tom Huckeby, who supervises the Violent Crimes Task Force that Bates served on. Huckeby’s son, Deputy Michael Huckeby, can be seen kneeling on Eric Harris’ head after Bates shot Harris April 2 following an undercover gun buy. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • World War II veterans remember: Oklahoman Joe Wilson helped liberate Dachau with 45th Infantry Division

    BY TIM STANLEY, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Apr 20, 2015

    Arms missing. Legs blown off. Brains oozing from shattered skulls. As a World War II combat medic in Europe, Joe Wilson “saw everything,” he said. “And it was just horrible.” But as much carnage as Wilson witnessed — and it was considerable, with his unit fighting more than 500 days in Sicily, Italy, France and Germany — none of it prepared him for Dachau. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.