Throughout its long and storied history, the Sierra Club has been an ardent advocate for sound environmental policy at the local, state, and federal levels. Reaffirming its mission to explore, preserve, and protect the natural resources and environment of our planet, the Chapter maintains an active presence at the Oklahoma State Legislature, numerous administrative agencies, and local municipalities. Each year, the Chapter Legislative Committee meets to determine the legislative priorities for the Chapter, identifying legislative proposals beneficial to the environment and those with potential adverse impacts. Through the Legislative Committee and its Director/Lobbyist, the Chapter works with elected officials to introduce, pass, or block such legislation, while collaborating with other interest groups to achieve its goals. The Legislative Committee meets regularly during the legislative session to review legislative progress and to organize grassroots action, including Grassroots Lobby Days at the Legislature.
Start of 2014 Legislative Session Update
The Oklahoma legislature is scheduled to resume Monday, February 3rd. The Oklahoma Chapter of the Sierra Club has already been hard at work reviewing legislation and coming up with a list of over one hundred bills that directly impact the environment that we must monitor throughout the session. As the only environmental organization with a lobbyist at the capitol, we are committed to standing up against the armies of corporate lobbyists our opponents have employed to represent their special interests.
This year our state's revenue looks to be down significantly compared to last year. This is always dangerous and threatens the budgets of those agencies that monitor and inspect our air and water. However, there is an alternative to draconian budget cuts. A special tax loophole is scheduled to expire this year that allows oil and gas companies to avoid paying their fair share on horizontal drilling activities. The oil and gas lobbyists have already started a full out assault on the capitol with their lobbyists advocating for an extension of this loophole!
This year the Oklahoma Chapter of the Sierra Club is dedicated to standing up against the oil and gas lobbyists and special interests to fight for every company to pay their fair share, just like each of us pays our fair share.
Having a registered lobbyist allows the Oklahoma Chapter of the Sierra Club to participate in the legislative process. However, our strength comes from our members and supporters taking action to show our elected officials that the environment matters.
Thank you for joining up with us to fight for our environment!
Follow us on Twitter: @OKSierraClub to get up to the minute legislative updates when our bills are being heard!