infrastructure

The Senate returns Wednesday, and President Trump made his way back to Washington on Monday after lying fairly low to end the year in Palm Beach, Fla., at his personal resort.

His first year was a mixed bag of legislative accomplishments (tax overhaul) and failures (health care), the book is still out on his foreign policy posture, and the Russia probe continues.

So what should we expect in 2018? There are four areas of domestic policy the president is particularly focused on, according to the White House — immigration, infrastructure, welfare and health care.

Despite some last-minute challenges, Republicans appear to have the votes to give President Trump his first legislative victory.

Final passage of the bill that will reshape the tax system and touch nearly every American is expected early this week, possibly Tuesday or Wednesday.

It will be Trump's first significant legislative accomplishment, not a bad Christmas gift for a president, who often boasts of lesser successes.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

A cornerstone of President Trump’s campaign and presidency is a $1 trillion proposal to rebuild U.S. infrastructure. The promise is a popular one, and could find bipartisan support across the country and in Congress. The infrastructure needs in Oklahoma illustrate why this issue is so appealing — and challenging.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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The Oklahoma City Council heard from the public Tuesday morning on bond and sales tax proposals that would inject more than $1.1 billion in funding for public safety and infrastructure.

Sgt. Mark Nelson of the Oklahoma City Fraternal Order of Police advocated for the funds going to public safety, noting that as Oklahoma City's population has grown in the past 20 years, police staffing numbers have remained about the same.

Despite America's rapt attention on former FBI Director James Comey's testimony, the White House has been observing Infrastructure Week. Infrastructure is one of the only policy areas that could have crossover appeal, but there has been little real movement so far on getting something through Congress.

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The Oklahoma Department of Transportation is recalculating its eight year plan.

Director Mike Patterson says this comes after the legislature removed $150 million from the program which keeps work going on Oklahoma’s roads and bridges.

“Last year we had to reduce the eight-year plan by $323 million,” Patterson says. “These are cumulative numbers, and so, if you look over the last six to eight years, the impact has been $800 million.”  

Brian Hardzinski / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

Three new sales tax and bond proposals could raise more than a billion dollars for public projects in Oklahoma City.

Two of the proposals would replace the one-cent MAPS 3 sales tax, which will expire at the end of this year, according to a city press release. Part of the MAPS tax would be replaced by a permanent one-quarter-cent sales tax to be reinvested into the city’s General Fund, which pays for public safety, animal control, parks, transit and other basic services. The tax is expected to generate $26 million per year.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Speaking at a media event atop an interstate overpass construction site in Norman, U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe told a small crowd Friday that President Donald Trump is serious about a proposed $1 trillion national infrastructure plan.

The Republican is chair of a Senate subcommittee that oversees such programs and he said Oklahoma stands to benefit from a new focus for federal funding.

A bill that adds steep criminal penalties for trespassing on sites containing “critical infrastructure” cleared its final legislative hurdle Wednesday and now awaits Gov. Mary Fallin’s signature. For more on House Bill 1123, here’s our story from March 2017.

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