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Oklahoma news briefs for July 23

Oklahoma news briefs: July 23, 2014
Oklahoman Published: July 23, 2014
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Oklahoma City

Capitol repair group forms

Gov. Mary Fallin appointed David Thompson, Phil Kennedy and Steve Mason to the State Capitol Repair Expenditure Oversight Committee. Fallin’s appointees will join state Reps. Mark McBride, R-Moore, Earl Sears, R-Bartlesville, and R.C. Pruett, D-Antlers, appointed by House Speaker Jeff Hickman. They are part of a nine-member bi-partisan committee that will oversee repairs to the Capitol. The remaining appointees will be from the Senate president pro tempore. House Joint Resolution 1033 authorizes a $120 million bond issue to pay for renovations to the Capitol. Thompson, of Edmond, will serve as chairman of the committee. He is president and chief executive officer of InvesTrust, a financial planning company. He previously served as president of OPUBCO Communications Group and as publisher of The Oklahoman. Kennedy, of Lawton, is owner and chief executive officer of Comanche Home Center, a retail building material supplier. He is also a partner in SpeedAway Containers and SpeedAway Trucking, and Southern Hardlines, a retail hardware supplier. Mason, of Oklahoma City, is president of Bluebird Consulting, an engineering firm. He previously served as president of Cardinal Engineering.

FROM STAFF REPORTS

Tahlequah

Cherokees get Braille

The Cherokee syllabary is now available in Braille. The Cherokee Language Program and the Commonwealth Braille and Talking Book Cooperative developed a Cherokee version of Braille. Dot patterns were derived from the 86-character Cherokee syllabary. The tribe’s language programs keep evolving to meet every need, said Bill John Baker, Cherokee Nation principal chief. The Commonwealth Braille and Talking Book Cooperative also developed a program that will convert typed Cherokee syllabary into print-ready Braille so existing Cherokee documents can be converted into tactile books for the blind and visually impaired. Every major technology, from the printing press, typewriter and word processor to fonts on the latest computers and smart phones, has adopted Cherokee, tribal leaders said. The tribe has translated Cherokee for Apple, Microsoft and Google products.

Sheila Stogsdill, For The Oklahoman