The Petroleum Alliance of Oklahoma is urging lawmakers to heed Governor Stitt’s warning of the effect the current industry downturn could have on the state budget.
In his State of the State remarks today, Governor Stitt recognized the central role of our industry, saying “Oklahoma’s economy, and quite frankly our state budget, is built on the backs of the hardworking men and women in the oil and natural gas industry.” Every measure of economic data backs up this claim. Whether it’s contribution to the state’s GDP, jobs, or tax revenue that funds education, Oklahoma is more dependent on the oil and natural gas industry than ever before.
“While our industry remains by far the largest contributor to the state budget, there is reason for concern,” said Alliance Chairman David Le Norman. “As the Governor pointed out, we’ve seen a dramatic decline in the state’s rig count over the past year. This drop, combined with historically low commodity prices, puts the industry in a precarious position. Now is not the time to push for increased tax burdens, unnecessary regulations, or policies that unfairly advantage one energy source over another,” said Le Norman.
“On behalf of our members, who include individuals and companies of all sizes from every segment of the industry, we simply ask that the Legislature refrain from any action that would compound the already difficult environment in which Oklahoma’s oil and natural gas producers are currently operating,” Le Norman concluded.