Tag Archives: press release

Gov. Fallin: Oklahoma Will Not Pursue a State-Based Exchange or Medicaid Expansion

Press Release

Monday, November 19, 2012

Gov. Fallin: Oklahoma Will Not Pursue a State-Based Exchange or Medicaid Expansion

OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today released the following statement announcing that Oklahoma will not pursue the creation of a state-based exchange or participate in the Medicaid expansion in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA):

“For the past few months, my staff and I have worked with other lawmakers, Oklahoma stakeholders and health care experts across the country to determine the best course of action for Oklahoma in regards to both the creation of a health insurance exchange and the expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Our priority has been to ascertain what can be done to increase quality and access to health care, contain costs, and do so without placing an undue burden on taxpayers or the state. As I have stated many times before, it is my firm belief that PPACA fails to further these goals, and will in fact decrease the quality of health care across the United States while contributing to the nation’s growing deficit crisis.

“Despite my ongoing opposition to the federal health care law, the state of Oklahoma is legally obligated to either build an exchange that is PPACA compliant and approved by the Obama Administration, or to default to an exchange run by the federal government. This choice has been forced on the people of Oklahoma by the Obama Administration in spite of the fact that voters have overwhelmingly expressed their opposition to the federal health care law through their support of State Question 756, a constitutional amendment prohibiting the implementation of key components of PPACA.

“After careful consideration, I have today informed U.S. Secretary of Health Kathleen Sebelius that Oklahoma will not pursue the creation of its own health insurance exchange. Any exchange that is PPACA compliant will necessarily be ‘state-run’ in name only and would require Oklahoma resources, staff and tax dollars to implement. It does not benefit Oklahoma taxpayers to actively support and fund a new government program that will ultimately be under the control of the federal government, that is opposed by a clear majority of Oklahomans, and that will further the implementation of a law that threatens to erode both the quality of American health care and the fiscal stability of the nation.

“Furthermore, I have also decided that Oklahoma will not be participating in the Obama Administration’s proposed expansion of Medicaid. Such an expansion would be unaffordable, costing the state of Oklahoma up to $475 million between now and 2020, with escalating annual expenses in subsequent years. It would also further Oklahoma’s reliance on federal money that may or may not be available in the future given the dire fiscal problems facing the federal government. On a state level, massive new costs associated with Medicaid expansion would require cuts to important government priorities such as education and public safety. Furthermore, the proposed Medicaid expansion offers no meaningful reform to a massive entitlement program already contributing to the out-of-control spending of the federal government.

“Moving forward, the state of Oklahoma will pursue two actions simultaneously. The first will be to continue our support for Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt’s ongoing legal challenge of PPACA. General Pruitt’s lawsuit raises different Constitutional questions than previous legal challenges, and both he and I remain optimistic that Oklahoma’s challenge can succeed.

“Our second and equally important task will be to pursue state-based solutions that improve health outcomes and contain costs for Oklahoma families. Serious reform, for instance, should be pursued in the area of Medicaid and public health, where effective chronic disease prevention and management programs could address the trend of skyrocketing medical bills linked to avoidable hospital and emergency room visits. I look forward to working with legislative leaders and lawmakers in both parties to pursue Oklahoma health care solutions for Oklahoma families.”

Anderson: audit vindicates critics of American Indian Cultural Center and Museum

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – October 17, 2012

Sen. Patrick Anderson today said a report on the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum (AICCM) released by the State Auditor and Inspector vindicates critics of further debt-financing for the project. The audit shows that over $97 million in state funds have been spent on the project, and yet, after seven years of construction, its promoters claim they still need an additional $80 million to complete the facility.

Anderson said Oklahoma taxpayers deserve better stewardship of their money than AICCM leaders and Board members have provided.
“This project is the epitome of government waste and demonstrates how easy it is for government officials to spend other people’s money without regard to cost,” said Anderson, R-Enid. “The leadership of this project has failed miserably and their failure certainly does not deserve to be rewarded with additional state funding. Walking away from this project may be a difficult pill to swallow, but it is time that we make a business decision on what is in the best interest of Oklahoma taxpayers. No private business would operate in this manner.”

The report states the Board’s inefficient and ineffective management of the project contributed directly to rising project costs. According to the audit, $18.7 million, or 20 percent of state funds expended on the project, have been spent on consultants. The audit shows the AICCM Board attempted to rely on consultants because the agency had been staffed with personnel who lacked experience relevant to the project. From 1994-2005, the audit states, none of the agency’s employees had experience in agency administration, project management or museums.

In relying on expensive consultants, the audit suggests the Board was acting according to a pattern by which they equated cost with equality, without any in-depth consideration of money-saving alternatives.

“As the audit shows, when given the opportunity to choose less expensive options for the construction of this museum, project leaders chose to select the most expensive option – even though they knew they did not have adequate funding,” Anderson said. “One would think that with so much spent on consulting, the consultants themselves might have suggested a more financially sound way to complete the construction of this museum. The taxpayers of Oklahoma deserve better stewardship of their money than the leadership of this project has provided.”

– End –

New Film, A NOBLE LIE: Oklahoma City 1995, asks questions about the Oklahoma City Bombing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 2011

New Film, A NOBLE LIE: Oklahoma City 1995, asks questions about the Oklahoma City Bombing

Produced in Oklahoma, this newly-released documentary by FREE MIND FILMS and Director James Lane takes a fresh and in-depth look at the circumstances surrounding the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.

But instead of accepting at face value the Federal Government’s deeply-flawed investigation, A NOBLE LIE features ground breaking information and eyewitness testimonies that refute the official story.

The April 19, 1995 bombing that destroyed much of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building involved far more revealing evidence than the FBI maintains.  A NOBLE LIE presents interviews with police officers, first responders, victims, journalists and investigators whose evidence demonstrates that not all the perpetrators were brought to justice.

Among the interview subjects are General Benton Partin, former head of weapons development for the Air Force, State Representative Charles Key, members of the Oklahoma Bombing Investigation Committee and Jesse Trentadue, whose brother Kenneth was tortured and murdered in Federal custody in the days following the bombing.

A NOBLE LIE is the only full-length documentary that addresses and answers many of the questions people have asked about the bombing.  Details as to what really happened regarding this horrific event, taking the lives of 168 people, have been summarily covered up by the Federal Government.  A Noble Lie re-examines the tragedy in a measured, informative and scholarly way, and in the process exposes the treachery that has gone unpunished.

For more information please visit www.ANobleLie.com

Free Mind Films, LLC
2119 Riverwalk Dr. Suite 213
Oklahoma City, OK 73160
405-921-6140
contact@freemindfilms.com

Michigan State Police Explain use of Cell Phone Data Extraction Device

Kaye Beach

April 21, 2011

Yesterday I posted this story;

Cell Phone Data Suckers-They’re Heeeere

“The Michigan State Police have a high-tech mobile forensics device that can be used to extract information from cell phones belonging to motorists stopped for minor traffic violations.”

The ACLU of MI has complained that they have been stymied in their open records request to MSP since 2008 and expressed concerns about how the  MSP might be using the devices.

Today the MSP issued a press release in response.

From EUPNews

April 21, 2011

LANSING – Recent news coverage prompted by a press release issued by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has brought speculation and caused inaccurate information to be reported about data extraction devices (DEDs) owned by the Michigan State Police (MSP).

To be clear, there have not been any allegations of wrongdoing by the MSP in the use of DEDs.

The MSP only uses the DEDs if a search warrant is obtained or if the person possessing the mobile device gives consent. The department*s internal directive is that the DEDs only be used by MSP specialty teams on criminal cases, such as crimes against children.

The DEDs are not being used to extract citizens’ personal information during routine traffic stops.

The MSP does not possess DEDs that can extract data without the officer actually possessing the owner’s mobile device. The DEDs utilized by the MSP cannot obtain information from mobile devices without the mobile device owner knowing.

Read more

Administration declares ‘emergency’

From POLITICO;

Press Release on

In an unusual Sunday briefing at the White House, administration officials said a “public health emergency” is being declared in the United States in order to mobilize maximum resources to combat fears of a global swine-flu pandemic.

The term “sounds more severe than it really is,” said Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, who called the measure “standard operating procedure,” adding, “I wish we could call it a declaration of emergency preparedness.” The same measures, she said, were taken for the inauguration and in cases of flood and hurricane.

Acting CDC Director Richard Besser said that health officials have reported 20 U.S. cases across five states – California, Kansas, New York, Ohio, and Texas – and expect the numbers to rise as doctors perform more tests to detect the illness, and warned that “more severe” cases are likely to surface here.

While the disease, which appears to have originated in Mexico, has killed more than 80 there and infected over 1,300, there have been no fatal American infections so far.

The government said it will release 25 percent of its stockpiles of the flu-fighting drugs Tamiflu and Relenza. Texas governor Rick Perry had previously requested 37,430 doses of Tamiflube sent to his state from the Strategic National Stockpile.

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs dismissed any suggestion that administration’s response would be hampered by the lack of confirmed appointees at the Department of Health and Human Services, the last Cabinet post to receive a secretary, or the yet to be filled post of surgeon general
Gesturing to Napolitano, Brennan, and acting CDC Director Richard Besser, he said “There is a team in place, the team is standing behind me.”

Gibbs said “the president’s health was never in any danger,” when asked about reports that Obama’s host on a museum tour in Mexico City died the next day, and had flu-like symptoms. The flu has a 24-48 hour incubation period, he said and Obama left Mexico nine days ago and has not shown symptoms of the flu nor has he been seen by a doctor or received preventative treatment.

Asked if the president’s decision to golf Sunday at Andrews Air Force Base was part of a White House strategy to reassure people, Gibbs chuckled and replied: “I’m not sure I’d draw a DIRECT conclusion.”

John Brennan, White House homeland-security adviser, said there is “no evidence whatsoever” of bioterrorism.

Napalitano said briefings will continue daily for awhile. The CDC is to brief reporters by teleconference at 3 p.m. ET.

“We’re preparing in an environment where we really don’t know,” she said, “ultimately what the size or seriousness of this outbreak is going to be.”

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0409/21710.html