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KCCU News
4:26 am
Tue November 25, 2008

Texas Pecan Crop Saved by Last Year's Nuts

Fort Worth, TX – The Texas pecan crop is one of the smallest in years -- and experts say the drought played a role.

Texas agriculture officials recently estimated this year's crop losses at $1.1 billion from the hot and dry spring and summer.

But last year's bountiful harvest is supplementing the shortfall.

Texas this year is expected to produce 32 million pounds of pecans. It trails Georgia, on track to produce 70 million pounds, and New Mexico, which is projected at 45 million.

The nationwide total is expected to be 204 million pounds.

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KCCU News
4:24 am
Tue November 25, 2008

Economic Downturn Hammers Teacher Retirement System

Oklahoma City, OK – Money in the Oklahoma Teachers' Retirement System has dropped 30 percent since July but the head of the system says retirement checks for former teachers are safe.

There are currently more than 130,000 current and former teachers in the system.

Tommy Beavers says the economic downturn has resulted in a decline in the fund's balance from $8.6 billion to under $7 billion.

Beavers says teachers are insulated from the decline because they're paid according to a defined benefit plan.

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KCCU News
4:20 am
Tue November 25, 2008

Panel Backs Off Curtailing Oklahoma Rural Ambulance Service, Seeks Legislative Help

Oklahoma City, OK – An advisory board has backed off asking for a rule change that could have cut ambulance service in rural areas.

The board instead will try to find a legislative solution.

The Oklahoma Emergency Response System and Development Advisory Committee named Betty Roan of Tishomingo to head a subcommittee to ask for help from the Legislature for financially troubled ambulance companies.

The subcommittee also will work on a new rule governing the responsibility of ambulance providers to respond to calls for help outside their service area.

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KCCU News
10:11 am
Mon November 24, 2008

Few Poor Marks for Oklahoma Tattoo Studios

Oklahoma City, OK – Tattoo studios were legalized in Oklahoma two years ago and state health inspectors say since then they've found fewer than 30 health code violations.

And more than 20 of those violations were for improper licensing and most of those violations were in 2006 and 2007.

Tattoo shop owners say legalizing the practice and creating oversight of tattooing has made the process safer.

Public health specialist Travis Brown with the state Health Department says no tattoo business' license has been revoked because of health code violations.

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KCCU News
10:07 am
Mon November 24, 2008

Young Conservatives Advisor at Texas A&M Quits

College Station, TX – A faculty adviser for the Texas A&M chapter of the Young Conservatives of Texas has quit the role after the group posted fliers identifying four professors who signed a petition opposing ``demonization'' of 1960s radical William Ayers.

John Fike, a professor in engineering technology and industrial engineering, quit as adviser last week, the Bryan-College Station Eagle reported.

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