The Norman Transcript


August 16, 2013

Fiscal debate ahead

NORMAN — The debate over reform of the nation’s immigration laws will likely take a back seat to fiscal issues when Congress comes back this fall.

A budget fight, health care reform battle and other fiscal issues are top of mind for most members of Congress.

However, U.S. Rep. Tom Cole, R-Moore, told Noman Chamber of Commerce members that such substantive issues will take a back seat to fiscal matters at hand.

Some members have threatened a government shutdown if provisions of the health care reform bill are allowed to stand.

On immigration, the comprehensive bill being discussed includes new provisions for more fencing around the southwest border.

The Senate’s bill calls for at least 700 miles of fencing — half of which already exists. But in some areas, there are gaps where immigrants can just walk around the border. Additionally, farmers report seeing immigrants scale the 18-foot fence in a matter of seconds.

Mr. Cole also said much progress is being made on deficit reduction. More needs to be done, but the federal deficit is coming down, he said.

In response to a chamber board member’s question, Mr. Cole said Congress needs to fix the Postal Service’ onerous pension liability rules and keep post offices open in smaller towns where it is often the center of the community.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • State is No. 2 in barbecue

    Americans love the marriage of smoke, fire and meat, but geography plays a part in how strong the passion is. Estately Blog has created a map charting which states are home to the most barbecue enthusiasts. Oklahoma comes in at No. 2 in ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Keep guns off campus

    Some Oklahoma lawmakers just won’t let the issue of allowing handguns on campus to go away. A joint legislative study will take a look at campuses around the nation to see if there is a way to accommodate faculty, staff and students who ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Improving children’s lives

    Social service organizations that have long-term debt for their headquarters and operating needs often spend much of their fundraising efforts meeting those obligations....

    July 29, 2014

  • State, local jobmarkets look up

    A tight labor market is often a big problem for economic development professionals. They need to be able to promise companies that there are willing workers in the community’s labor pool....

    July 26, 2014

  • Be careful out in the heat

    This week’s triple-digit temperatures are contributing to heat-related illnesses. The state health department’s Injury Prevention Service reminds Oklahomans of the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke....

    July 25, 2014

  • Get smart on crime

    It’s no secret that prison guards have become the frontline mental health case workers in Oklahoma prisons. Accessing mental health services outside of prison is tough but even harder behind the walls....

    July 25, 2014

  • Quite the resilient bunch

    The people of Moore are a resilient bunch. They’ve bounced back from tornadoes before, but the current renaissance may be the quickest yet. FEMA officials said it would take two years to see some sense of normalcy. That’s hardly the case....

    July 24, 2014

  • A fresh start for VA

    All of us have high hopes for the confirmation and success of Veterans Affairs Secretary nominee Robert McDonald. If confirmed — and most believe he’s a shoe-in — McDonald will take over a paralyzed system of health care that is not ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Call up National Guard

    We’re not sure it will help, but you have to hand it to Texas Gov. Rick Perry. He deployed up to 1,000 Texas National Guard troops to help secure his state’s border with Mexico this week....

    July 23, 2014

  • It’s only getting worse

    Conditions for children in Oklahoma were starting to look up for a few years, according to the annual Kids Count reports. Now we know it wasn’t getting better. The recession was impacting the rest of the country, dropping their scores....

    July 23, 2014