The Norman Transcript

Opinion

April 26, 2014

Let’s finish the job

NORMAN — The fate of the Native American Cultural Center and Museum may hinge on any change in leadership of the state House. As it stands, lawmakers have resisted efforts to pull money from the state’s unclaimed property fund to match with private donations to finish the center.

The state Senate approved a plan, but the House later shot it down. A local state senator says he doubts the business plan promoted by the center would stand up to much scrutiny, but he still thinks it needs to be finished. Organizers think the half-finished center at the crossroads of Interstate 40 and Interstate 35 will generate millions of dollars in sales tax from the growth of surrounding businesses.

If the question of a statewide bond issue to finish the museum were put to a vote of the people, it might lose if paired with the storm shelter question or one to repair the state Capitol. Oklahomans often vote their pocketbooks and three such bond packages might be two too many.

About $91 million has been spent on the project so far. Organizers say the $40 million from the legislature will be matched by $40 million in pledges from the city of Oklahoma City, tribes and others. It’s costing the state about $68,000 a month to secure the site.

Lawmakers are struggling with what to do with the center. We like the original plan to fund the museum’s completion out of the unclaimed property fund and turn it over to a state-run trust. As it stands, it’s an embarrassment that 150,000 cars pass by every day.

Breaking news, severe weather alerts, AMBER alerts, sports scores from The Norman Transcript are available as text messages right to your phone or mobile device. You decide which type of alerts you want to receive. Find out more or to signup, click here.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • Marijuana a gateway for new OK voters

    A poll this past year showed significant Oklahoma support for legalizing the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. The poll showed that more than 71 percent of those surveyed thought medical marijuana was appropriate for patients who ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Expansion effect evaluated

    Editor, The Transcript: The effect of the Medicaid expansion rejection and acceptance on hospitals’ uncompensated costs are now being evaluated....

    July 31, 2014

  • America paying the piper

    Every third American you pass on the street has debts that have been turned over to a collection agency whose 140,000 workers are keeping the phones ringing....

    July 31, 2014

  • 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

  • Community Action mostly closed due to cutbacks

    Editor, The Transcript: The Community Action, at 1155 E Main St. in Norman, for decades has served Cleveland County with the following everyday services: a food pantry, short-term housing for the homeless, providing rides for those without ...

    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

  • Nutritional article should be accurate

    I read with interest the July 13 article “Are low-carb diets really healthy?” by Cassidie Day. Unfortunately, a number of statements in this article were incorrect. The first problematic statement was, “Carbs are an essential nutrient ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Hospital story headline was too sensationalized

    Editor, The Transcript: On July 18, The Transcript ran a front page article with the headline “Lawsuit filed against Norman Regional — Civil suit alleges improper billing practices by NRH and contracted physicians groups.” As a first page ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Congress should close gaps

    Of all of Edward Snowden’s revelations about electronic surveillance by the National Security Agency, the most unsettling was that the government was accumulating vast numbers of records about the telephone calls of American citizens. In ...

    July 27, 2014