House committee assignments made 2021

Office of House Speaker Charles McCall

Note: Corrections were made to assignments to the Business and Commerce, Common Education, County and Municipal Government, Energy, General Government, and Transportation committees; the Insurance Committee was added to the committee schedule.

OKLAHOMA CITY – House of Representatives committee assignments and schedules for the 58th Oklahoma Legislature were made Friday.

The House will operate with 30 standing committees and 10 appropriations and budget subcommittees for the two-year session beginning Feb. 1. Committee schedules are available here.

House Speaker Charles McCall, R-Atoka, made the following committee assignments:

Administrative Rules

  • Rep. Tom Gann, R-Inola, Chair
  • Rep. Denise Crosswhite Hader, R-Piedmont, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Toni Hasenbeck, R-Elgin
  • Rep. Stan May, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Nicole Miller, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Jim Olsen, R-Roland
  • Rep. Wendi Stearman, R-Collinsville
  • Rep. Rande Worthen, R-Lawton
  • Rep. Melissa Provenzano, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Jacob Rosecrants, D-Norman

Agriculture and Rural Development

  • Rep. Dell Kerbs, R-Shawnee, Chair
  • Rep. Kenton Patzkowsky, R-Balko, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Ty Burns, R-Pawnee
  • Rep. Trey Caldwell, R-Lawton
  • Rep. Mike Dobrinski, R-Okeene
  • Rep. Jim Grego, R-Wilburton
  • Rep. David Hardin, R-Stilwell
  • Rep. Justin Humphrey, R-Lane
  • Rep. Dick Lowe, R-Amber
  • Rep. John Pfeiffer, R-Orlando
  • Rep. Danny Sterling, R-Tecumseh
  • Rep. Rick West, R-Heavener
  • Rep. Jose Cruz, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Ajay Pittman, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Trish Ranson, D-Tulsa

Alcohol, Tobacco and Controlled Substances

  • Rep. T.J. Marti, R-Broken Arrow, Chair
  • Rep. Rusty Cornwell, R-Vinita, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Jon Echols, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Scott Fetgatter, R-Okmulgee
  • Rep. Kyle Hilbert, R-Bristow
  • Rep. Dustin Roberts, R-Durant
  • Rep. Cynthia Roe, R-Lindsay
  • Rep. Forrest Bennett, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Monroe Nichols, D-Tulsa

Appropriations and Budget

  • Rep. Kevin Wallace, R-Wellston, Chair
  • Rep. Kyle Hilbert, R-Bristow, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Rhonda Baker, R-Yukon
  • Rep. Jeff Boatman, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Sheila Dills, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Jon Echols, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Scott Fetgatter, R-Okmulgee
  • Rep. Ross Ford, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Brian Hill, R-Mustang
  • Rep. Chris Kannady, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Mark Lawson, R-Sapulpa
  • Rep. Mark Lepak, R-Claremore
  • Rep. Ryan Martinez, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Mark McBride, R-Moore
  • Rep. Kevin McDugle, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Marcus McEntire, R-Duncan
  • Rep. Nicole Miller, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Garry Mize, R-Guthrie
  • Rep. Carl Newton, R-Cherokee
  • Rep. Mike Osburn, R-Edmond
  • Rep. John Pfeiffer, R-Orlando
  • Rep. Danny Sterling, R-Tecumseh
  • Rep. Judd Strom, R-Copan
  • Rep. Dustin Roberts, R-Durant
  • Rep. Sean Roberts, R-Hominy
  • Rep. Todd Russ, R-Cordell
  • Rep. Josh West, R-Grove
  • Rep. Tammy West, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Forrest Bennett, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Meloyde Blancett, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Regina Goodwin, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Cyndi Munson, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Monroe Nichols, D-Tulsa
  • Minority Leader Emily Virgin, D-Norman
  • Rep. Collin Walke, D-Oklahoma City

Banking, Financial Services and Pensions

  • Rep. Mark Lepak, R-Claremore, Chair
  • Rep. Preston Stinson, R-Edmond, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Jeff Boatman, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Chad Caldwell, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Avery Frix, R-Muskogee
  • Rep. Kyle Hilbert, R-Bristow
  • Rep. Robert Manger, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Mickey Dollens, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Collin Walke, D-Oklahoma City

Business and Commerce

  • Rep. Kevin McDugle, R-Broken Arrow, Chair
  • Rep. Trey Caldwell, R-Lawton, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Rhonda Baker, R-Yukon
  • Rep. Steve Bashore, R-Miami
  • Rep. Rusty Cornwell, R-Vinita
  • Rep. Gerrid Kendrix, R-Altus
  • Rep. Mark McBride, R-Moore
  • Rep. Judd Strom, R-Copan
  • Rep. Tammy Townley, R-Ardmore
  • Rep. Meloyde Blancett, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Regina Goodwin, D-Tulsa

Children, Youth and Family Services

  • Rep. Carol Bush, R-Tulsa, Chair
  • Rep. John Talley, R-Stillwater, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Mark Lawson, R-Sapulpa
  • Rep. Jadine Nollan, R-Sand Springs
  • Rep. Randy Randleman, R-Eufaula
  • Rep. Cyndi Munson, D-Oklahoma City

Common Education

  • Rep. Rhonda Baker, R-Yukon, Chair
  • Rep. Mark Vancuren, R-Owasso, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Brad Boles, R-Marlow
  • Rep. Chad Caldwell, R-Enid
  • Rep. Sherrie Conley, R-Newcastle
  • Rep. Kyle Hilbert, R-Bristow
  • Rep. Ronny Johns, R-Ada
  • Rep. Dick Lowe, R-Amber
  • Rep. Dustin Roberts, R-Durant
  • Rep. Todd Russ, R-Cordell
  • Rep. Tammy West, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Melissa Provenzano, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Jacob Rosecrants, D-Norman
  • Rep. John Waldron, D-Tulsa

County and Municipal Government

  • Rep. Lonnie Sims, R-Jenks, Chair
  • Rep. Rick West, R-Heavener, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Brad Boles, R-Marlow
  • Rep. Bob Ed Culver, R-Tahlequah
  • Rep. Sheila Dills, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Tom Gann, R-Inola
  • Rep. Mark Lawson, R-Sapulpa
  • Rep. Sean Roberts, R-Hominy
  • Rep. Forrest Bennett, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Melissa Provenzano, D-Tulsa

Criminal Justice and Corrections

  • Rep. Justin Humphrey, R-Lane, Chair
  • Rep. David Hardin, R-Stilwell, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Ross Ford, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Kevin West, R-Moore
  • Rep. Mauree Turner, D-Oklahoma City

Elections and Ethics

  • Rep. Jim Olsen, R-Sallisaw, Chair
  • Rep. Max Wolfley, R-Oklahoma City, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Jim Grego, R-Wilburton
  • Rep. Anthony Moore, R-Clinton
  • Rep. Randy Randleman, R-Eufaula
  • Rep. David Smith, R-Arpelar
  • Rep. Rande Worthen, R-Lawton
  • Rep. Merleyn Bell, D-Norman
  • Rep. Cyndi Munson, D-Oklahoma City

Energy and Natural Resources

  • Rep. Brad Boles, R-Marlow, Chair
  • Rep. Anthony Moore, R-Clinton, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Trey Caldwell, R-Lawton
  • Rep. Dean Davis, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Eddy Dempsey, R-Valliant
  • Rep. Mark Lepak, R-Claremore
  • Rep. Ken Luttrell, R-Ponca City
  • Rep. Mark McBride, R-Moore
  • Rep. Eric Roberts, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Sean Roberts, R-Hominy
  • Rep. Lonnie Sims, R-Jenks
  • Rep. Merleyn Bell, D-Norman
  • Rep. Jason Lowe, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Monroe Nichols, D-Tulsa

General Government

  • Rep. Kevin West, R-Oklahoma City, Chair
  • Rep. Sheila Dills, R-Tulsa, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Dell Kerbs, R-Shawnee
  • Rep. Marilyn Stark, R-Bethany
  • Rep. Preston Stinson, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Danny Williams, R-Seminole
  • Rep. Max Wolfley, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Denise Brewer, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Cyndi Munson, D-Oklahoma City

Government Modernization and Efficiency

  • Rep. Jeff Boatman, R-Tulsa, Chair
  • Rep. Eric Roberts, R-Oklahoma City, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Gerrid Kendrix, R-Altus
  • Rep. Ryan Martinez, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Nicole Miller, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Mike Osburn, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Daniel Pae, R-Lawton
  • Rep. Tammy Townley, R-Ardmore
  • Rep. Meloyde Blancett, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Andy Fugate, D-Oklahoma City

Health Services and Long-Term Care

  • Rep. Chad Caldwell, R-Enid, Chair
  • Rep. Marilyn Stark, R-Bethany, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Dean Davis, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Jadine Nollan, R-Sand Springs
  • Rep. Cynthia Roe, R-Lindsay
  • Rep. Trish Ranson, D-Stillwater

Higher Education and Career Tech

  • Rep. Jadine Nollan, R-Sand Springs, Chair
  • Rep. Sherrie Conley, R-Newcastle, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Toni Hasenbeck, R-Elgin
  • Rep. Dick Lowe, R-Amber
  • Rep. Ken Luttrell, R-Ponca City
  • Rep. Logan Phillips, R-Mounds
  • Rep. John Talley, R-Stillwater
  • Rep. Mark Vancuren, R-Owasso
  • Rep. Trish Ranson, D-Norman
  • Minority Leader Emily Virgin, D-Norman

Insurance

  • Rep. Chris Sneed, R-Fort Gibson, Chair
  • Rep. Dean Davis, R-Broken Arrow, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Brian Hill, R-Mustang
  • Rep. T.J. Marti, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Marcus McEntire, R-Duncan
  • Rep. Garry Mize, R-Guthrie
  • Rep. Todd Russ, R-Cordell
  • Rep. Kevin Wallace, R-Wellston
  • Rep. Forrest Bennett, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Mickey Dollens, D-Oklahoma City

Judiciary – Criminal

  • Rep. Rande Worthen, R-Lawton , Chair
  • Rep. Gerrid Kendrix, R-Altus, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Carol Bush, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Ross Ford, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Stan May, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Danny Sterling, R-Tecumseh
  • Rep. Lonnie Sims, R-Jenks
  • Rep. Judd Strom, R-Copan
  • Rep. Jose Cruz, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Jason Lowe, D-Oklahoma City

Judiciary – Civil

  • Rep. Chris Kannady, R-Oklahoma City, Chair
  • Rep. Bob Ed Culver, R-Tahlequah, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Steve Bashore, R-Miami
  • Rep. Anthony Moore, R-Clinton
  • Rep. Carl Newton, R-Cherokee
  • Rep. Jim Olsen, R-Roland
  • Rep. Chris Sneed, R-Fort Gibson
  • Rep. Preston Stinson, R-Edmond
  • Minority Leader Emily Virgin, D-Norman
  • Rep. Collin Walke, D-Oklahoma City

Public Health

  • Rep. Cynthia Roe, R-Lindsay, Chair
  • Rep. Toni Hasenbeck, R-Elgin, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Sherrie Conley, R-Newcastle
  • Rep. Dell Kerbs, R-Shawnee
  • Rep. Marcus McEntire, R-Duncan
  • Rep. Carl Newton, R-Cherokee
  • Rep. Marilyn Stark, R-Bethany
  • Rep. Wendi Stearman, R-Collinsville
  • Rep. Denise Brewer, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Ajay Pittman, D-Oklahoma City

Public Safety

  • Rep. Robert Manger, R-Oklahoma City, Chair
  • Rep. Stan May, R-Broken Arrow, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Tom Gann, R-Inola
  • Rep. David Hardin, R-Stilwell
  • Rep. Justin Humphrey, R-Lane
  • Rep. Jay Steagall, R-Yukon
  • Rep. Danny Williams, R-Seminole
  • Rep. Jason Lowe, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Regina Goodwin, D-Tulsa

Rules

  • Rep. Mike Osburn, R-Edmond, Chair
  • Rep. Brian Hill, R-Mustang, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Jon Echols, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Chris Kannady, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Kevin McDugle, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. John Pfeiffer, R-Orland
  • Rep. Logan Phillips, R-Mounds
  • Rep. Tammy West, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Mauree Turner, D-Oklahoma City
  • Minority Leader Emily Virgin, D-Norman

States’ Rights

  • Rep. Jay Steagall, R-Yukon, Chair
  • Rep. Wendi Stearman, R-Collinsville, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Ty Burns, R-Pawnee
  • Rep. Denise Crosswhite Hader, R-Piedmont
  • Rep. Kevin West, R-Moore
  • Rep. John Waldron, D-Tulsa

Technology

  • Rep. Logan Phillips, R-Mounds, Chair
  • Rep. Danny Williams, R-Seminole, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Scott Fetgatter, R-Okmulgee
  • Rep. Daniel Pae, R-Lawton
  • Rep. David Smith, R-Arpelar
  • Rep. Andy Fugate, D-Oklahoma City

Tourism

  • Rep. Tammy Townley, R-Ardmore, Chair
  • Rep. Jim Grego, R-McAlester, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Steve Bashore, R-Miami
  • Rep. Eddy Dempsey, R-Valliant
  • Rep. Randy Randleman, R-Eufaula
  • Rep. Chris Sneed, R-Fort Gibson
  • Rep. Mickey Dollens, D-Oklahoma City

Transportation

  • Rep. Avery Frix, R-Muskogee, Chair
  • Rep. Ronny Johns, R-Ada, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Carol Bush, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Denise Crosswhite Hader, R-Piedmont
  • Rep. Bob Ed Culver, R-Tahlequah
  • Rep. Mike Dobrinski, R-Okeene
  • Rep. Tommy Hardin, R-Madill
  • Rep. Kenton Patzkowsky, R-Balko
  • Rep. Josh West, R-Grove
  • Rep. Regina Goodwin, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Collin Walke, D-Oklahoma City

Utilities

  • Rep. Garry Mize, R-Guthrie, Chair
  • Rep. Mike Dobrinski, R-Okeene, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Sheila Dills, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Avery Frix, R-Muskogee
  • Rep. Ronny Johns, R-Ada
  • Rep. T.J. Marti, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Kenton Patzkowsky, R-Balko
  • Rep. Mark Vancuren, R-Owasso
  • Rep. Jason Lowe, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Monroe Nichols, D-Tulsa

Veterans and Military Affairs

  • Rep. Tommy Hardin, R-Madill, Chair
  • Rep. David Smith, R-Arpelar, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Ken Luttrell, R-Ponca City
  • Rep. Robert Manger, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Jay Steagall, R-Yukon
  • Rep. Josh West, R-Grove
  • Rep. Andy Fugate, D-Oklahoma City

Wildlife

  • Rep. Ty Burns, R-Pawnee, Chair
  • Rep. Eddy Dempsey, R-Valliant, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Rusty Cornwell, R-Vinita
  • Rep. Tommy Hardin, R-Madill
  • Rep. Eric Roberts, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. John Talley, R-Stillwater
  • Rep. Rick West, R-Heavener
  • Rep. Max Wolfley, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Jacob Rosecrants, D-Norman
  • Rep. John Waldron, D-Tulsa

 Appropriations Subcommittees

Education

  • Rep. Mark McBride, R-Moore, Chair
  • Rep. Dick Lowe, R-Amber, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Rhonda Baker, R-Yukon
  • Rep. Chad Caldwell, R-Enid
  • Rep. Sherrie Conley, R-Newcastle
  • Rep. Sheila Dills, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Ronny Johns, R-Ada
  • Rep. Jadine Nollan, R-Sand Springs
  • Rep. Danny Williams, R-Seminole
  • Rep. Max Wolfley, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Andy Fugate, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Melissa Provenzano, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Trish Ranson, D-Stillwater

Finance – Revenue and Taxation

  • Rep. Scott Fetgatter, R-Okmulgee, Chair
  • Rep. Steve Bashore, R-Miami, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Brad Boles, R-Marlow
  • Rep. Rusty Cornwell, R-Vinita
  • Rep. Mark Lepak, R-Claremore
  • Rep. Brian Hill, R-Mustang
  • Rep. Garry Mize, R-Guthrie
  • Rep. Mike Osburn, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Merleyn Bell, D-Norman
  • Rep. Mickey Dollens, D-Oklahoma City

General Government

  • Rep. Judd Strom, R-Copan, Chair
  • Rep. Daniel Pae, R-Lawton, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Denise Crosswhite Hader, R-Piedmont
  • Rep. Dean Davis, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Tom Gann, R-Inola
  • Rep. Gerrid Kendrix, R-Altus
  • Rep. Ryan Martinez, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Kevin West, R-Heavener
  • Rep. Denise Brewer, D-Tulsa
  • Rep. Mauree Turner, D-Oklahoma City

Health

  • Rep. Marcus McEntire, R-Duncan, Chair
  • Rep. Tammy West, R-Bethany, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Carol Bush, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. T.J. Marti, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Cynthia Roe, R-Lindsay
  • Rep. Chris Sneed, R-Fort Gibson
  • Rep. Meloyde Blancett, D-Tulsa

Human Services

  • Rep. Mark Lawson, R-Sapulpa, Chair
  • Rep. Randy Randleman, R-Eufaula, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Jeff Boatman, R-Tulsa
  • Rep. Tommy Hardin, R-Madill
  • Rep. Marilyn Stark, R-Bethany
  • Rep. Tammy Townley, R-Ardmore
  • Rep. Denise Brewer, D-Tulsa

Judiciary

  • Rep. Danny Sterling, R-Tecumseh, Chair
  • Rep. Josh West, R-Grove, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Robert Manger, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Mike Dobrinski, R-Okeene
  • Rep. Chris Kannady, R-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Anthony Moore, R-Clinton
  • Rep. Mark Vancuren, R-Owasso
  • Rep. Rande Worthen, R-Lawton
  • Rep. Jose Cruz, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Mauree Turner, D-Oklahoma City

Natural Resources and Regulatory Services

  • Rep. Carl Newton, R-Cherokee, Chair
  • Rep. John Pfeiffer, R-Orlando, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Ty Burns, R-Pawnee
  • Rep. Trey Caldwell, R-Lawton
  • Rep. Jim Grego, R-Wilburton
  • Rep. Dell Kerbs, R-Shawnee
  • Rep. Kenton Patzkowsky, R-Balko
  • Rep. Jay Steagall, R-Yukon
  • Rep. Merleyn Bell, D-Norman
  • Rep. Jacob Rosecrants, D-Norman

Public Safety

  • Rep. Ross Ford, R-Broken Arrow, Chair
  • Rep. Dustin Roberts, R-Durant, Vice Chair
  • Rep. David Hardin, R-Stilwell
  • Rep. Justin Humphrey, R-Lane
  • Rep. Kevin McDugle, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Jim Olsen, R-Roland
  • Rep. Lonnie Sims, R-Jenks
  • Rep. Rick West, R-Heavener
  • Rep. Jose Cruz, D-Oklahoma City
  • Rep. Ajay Pittman, D-Oklahoma City

Select Agencies

  • Rep. Sean Roberts, R-Hominy, Chair
  • Rep. Ken Luttrell, R-Ponca City, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Stan May, R-Broken Arrow
  • Rep. Logan Phillips, R-Mounds
  • Rep. David Smith, R-Arpelar
  • Rep. Wendi Stearman, R-Collinsville
  • Rep. John Talley, R-Stillwater
  • Rep. John Waldron, D-Tulsa

Transportation

  • Rep. Todd Russ, R-Cordell, Chair
  • Rep. Nicole Miller, R-Edmond, Vice Chair
  • Rep. Bob Ed Culver, R-Tahlequah
  • Rep. Eddy Dempsey, R-Valliant
  • Rep. Avery Frix, R-Muskogee
  • Rep. Toni Hasenbeck, R-Elgin
  • Rep. Eric Roberts, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Preston Stinson, R-Edmond
  • Rep. Ajay Pittman, D-Oklahoma

Biden’s administration could affect Oklahoma’s energy industry in surprising ways

Jack Money | USA Today

Presidential administrations and Congresses throughout the past 40 years undoubtedly worked to nudge the nation’s energy and climate-related policies one way or another.

Debates about ways to support the energy industry both in Oklahoma and across the nation have been part of every presidential and congressional election since the 1980s, and subsequent governmental actions have prompted applause or angst as they have helped or hurt energy production along the way.

That’s no surprise. While the number of Oklahomans employed by oil and gas companies in the state is relatively small, the industry’s impact on the overall health of the state’s economy and the services provided by state and local governments is huge.

A report issued by the Oklahoma State Chamber in September 2016, for example, showed:

Energy industry slowdowns, it observed, typically lead to losses of gross production, property, sales and income tax revenues and an associated loss of discretionary spending.

Read more.

DEBATABLE – Market, not policy, is key to OK’s energy future

Jack Money | The Oklahoman

Debates about ways to support the energy industry both in Oklahoma and across the nation have been part of every presidential and congressional election since the 1980s, and subsequent governmental actions have prompted applause or angst as they have helped or hurt energy production along the way.

That’s no surprise. While the number of Oklahomans employed by oil and gas companies in the state is relatively small, the industry’s impact on the overall health of the state’s economy and the services provided by state and local governments is huge.

A report issued by the Oklahoma State Chamber in September 2016, for example, showed:

  • In 2015, the oil and gas industry employed 53,500 Oklahomans who earned $5.6 billion.
  • Another 95,000 Oklahomans earned $10 billion in self-employment income from oil and gas activity.
  • In total, their earnings represented 13.2% of total state earnings during the year.

Energy industry slowdowns, it observed, typically lead to losses of gross production, property, sales and income tax revenues and an associated loss of discretionary spending.

In short, keeping the industry healthy has been paramount to both industry leaders and state government officials.

As the next administration under President Joe Biden prepares to take office this month, questions again are being asked about how federal energy policies might change and how that might impact Oklahoma’s energy industry.

While the questions are nothing new, answers from at least two Oklahomans might surprise you.

Mike Cantrell, chairman of Postwood Energy LLC and co-chairman of the Oklahoma Energy Producers Alliance, has been an activist in Oklahoma’s oil and gas industry since leading a membership committee for the Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association (OIPA) in the early 1980s.

Over the years, he represented the industry and its viewpoints on environmental, trade and tax policies that all influenced the success of oil and gas operators in the state.

These days, Cantrell said he has re-assessed many positions he has taken over that time. The industry, for example, lobbied hard to keep foreign oil overseas, despite its role (through an agreement made by President Ronald Reagan with Saudi Arabia) to flood markets with cheap oil to bring the USSR to its economic knees.

He also lobbied hard on behalf of the industry to eliminate the windfall profit tax on oil and gas producers, something they were able to accomplish for owners of stripper wells in 1981 and for producers generally several years later.

“I have done my fair share of that, looking back, and asking whether or not the positions I took were right,” Cantrell said. “The question is: Should we have let the marketplace decide?”

His thoughts are similar to those of Jim Roth, an attorney who is the dean of Oklahoma City University’s School of Law and a past Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner.

Roth said past Congresses and administrations indeed have been able to influence rises and falls in domestic energy production through regulatory and tax-related policies.

“But there are market forces that are evolving, regardless who is in control,” Roth said.

A 40-year itch

Until a decade ago, the most common called-for remedy to support Oklahoma’s energy industry was the need to enact a tax on imported crude oil.

Tulsa consultant Wayne Swearingen argued for a $5 per barrel tax when he addressed the OIPA in 1982, arguing that could help the nation pay down its deficit. He also called for Congress to eliminate windfall taxes on profits obtained through the production of carbon-based energy products.

“That’s the least awful of all ways to tax the industry,” Swearingen said.

Calls for import taxes only grew louder as President Reagan entered his second term, with spot pricing for West Texas Intermediate crude at the Cushing terminal averaging $15.05 in 1986.

The International Association of Drilling Contractors called for the president to save the oil and gas drilling and exploration industry from “imminent collapse” by using his executive authority to impose import fees on both oil and gasoline.

“The collapse of oil prices in combination with punitive actions of the Congress and the federal government in the form of windfall profit taxes, natural gas price controls and the like, threatens to destroy the U.S. independent oil and gas industry and critical drilling and exploration efforts with it and threatens the security of the nation,” said association President Ned E. Simes. “President Reagan used this authority recently to limit the import of cedar wood shingles from Canada. Certainly, the survival of America’s energy industry is at least as strategic as that of the wood shingle industry.”

As the 1988 presidential election between candidates Vice President George H.W. Bush and Michael Dukakis approached, Oklahoma’s energy producers were hopeful Bush would support the industry. But by the time he sought a second term in 1992, markets remained in control.
The average price at Cushing for crude was $20.58 a barrel that year as the nation imported more than 2.2 billion barrels.

“There remains no commitment, or even recognition, from this administration to address the urgent problems and inequities within the domestic oil and gas industry,” said F.W. “Pete” Brown, the OIPA’s president at the time. “President Bush has been criticized for not having an energy strategy. I believe he has an energy policy — cheap oil today, regardless of the cost tomorrow.”

Under President Bill Clinton’s two terms, crude prices generally climbed. But imports climbed as well, growing to more than 3.3 billion barrels in 2000.

And as President George W. Bush served the first year of his second term in 2005, crude’s price averaged $56.64 a barrel as imports reached a record level of nearly 3.7 billion barrels.

When President Barack Obama took office in 2009, the shale revolution was growing. As domestic production climbed, oil imports declined, with only about 2.5 billion barrels imported in 2019.

Read More.

OEPA chairman says legislators and regulators should not ignore oil and gas industry

Jerry Bohnen | Oklahoma Energy Today

The chairman of the Oklahoma Energy Producers Alliance suggested that it’s time the legislature and state regulators of the oil and gas industry recognize what has happened to the industry and the state because of the COVID-19 pandemic. And he notes when the industry asked for help, it didn’t get it.
In response to questions posed by OK Energy Today, OEPA Chairman Dewey Bartlett Jr. said the pandemic changed “our world and economy in so many ways” and as a result, “our industry has been in survival mode since then.”
He noted that a year ago, the New Year of 2020 started with $60 a barrel crude oil prices and that gasoline and other liquids were at similar or related reasonable levels. Then the pandemic hit and the oil and gas industry went to regulators asking for help.
” We approached the Oklahoma Corporation Commission to help us by officially acknowledging that crude oil prices were being improperly manipulated by foreign producers and to consider a limitation upon Oklahoma production rates. They declined to get involved. Oklahoma has now lost thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions in tax revenues,” said Bartlett in his statement.
He went on to state that the best thing the legislature can do now is to improve the growth possibilities of any and all aspects of the local economies.
Bartlett had advice for educators too, saying their efforts to support and promote public education should be “more inclusive in promoting career choices that include learning a trade such as welding, machine operations, electronic repair, metal fabrication, etc., equaling their promotion of a college degree.”
The OEPA leader said a college degree is not possible for those families who have lost jobs and don’t have access to benefit packages.
“Giving high school students more alternatives for a career path that better fits that student’s interest would be very helpful…,” added Bartlett.
He pointed out the Oklahoma oil and gas industry supported an increase in its gross production tax a few years ago in order to increase salaries for teachers.

 

Oil executives in Oklahoma say they’re making plans for what they say will be a tough era

Erin Beu | KOCO News 5

Nine days until the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, and oil executives in Oklahoma are making plans for what they say will be a tough era.

Biden promised a carbon-neutral nation by 2050. KOCO 5 asked executives how they’re feeling.

“Get rid of the oil and gas companies? Will you remember that, Texas? Will you remember that, Pennsylvania, Oklahoma?” President Donald Trump said during one of the presidential debates.

That comment during the heated debate between Trump and Biden sparked some interest among Oklahomans.

“The oil industry pollutes scientifically,” Biden said during the debate.

Biden further explained he wanted to move away from fossil fuels and rely on green energy.

Dewey Bartlett, with the Oklahoma Energy Producer Alliance, said regardless of his political beliefs, he panicked when he heard Biden say he plans to move away from fossil fuels.

“We’ll be having problems. Everyone will be having problems,” Bartlett said. “That would not only devastate Oklahoma, that would devastate the entire country.”

According to ABC News, energy companies stockpiled enough drilling permits for western public lands to keep pumping oil for years. Biden wants to end new drilling on those same lands as part of his overhaul of how Americans get energy.

“He wanted to not allow any more drilling on federal lands, on public lands,” Bartlett said.

But that’s not happening in Oklahoma because the oil and gas companies don’t operate on too many federal lands. Instead, Bartlett said they feel like sitting ducks, waiting to find out what types of regulations Biden might put into place.

Read more.

OK Attorney General Mike Hunter Letter to the Seminole Nation

As an update to the recent letters sent from the Seminole Nation regarding fees, Attorney General Mike Hunter sent a strong letter to the Seminole Nation that you can read HERE.

General Counsel, Lee Levinson Opinion on the Seminole Nation Letter

As an update to the recent letters sent from the Seminole Nation regarding fees, you can read an updated opinion from our General Counsel, Lee Levinson – click HERE to read it.

Seminole Nation 2020 Letter Proposing Severance Fee on Production

We have been notified that members in the Seminole Nation area have received a letter proposing an 8% severance fee on production. See the letter HERE. This is the same letter that the Seminole Nation sent out 2 years ago and we still have the same opinion as before – this request is still not valid.
We want you to know that we are consulting with our attorney, House & Senate leadership, Congressional offices, the Attorney General, and the Governor’s office to oppose this overreach by the Seminole Nation, and to protect the interests of the small, family-owned businesses.
We also plan to work with other like-minded associations on this matter. We are taking this VERY seriously and will report back. As soon as we have a legal opinion, we will be sharing it with you. If our opinion or analysis changes at any time, you’ll be notified immediately.

Expect more layoffs at Chesapeake, energy producer group’s chairman says

Erin Beu | KOCO News 5

About 200 people have lost their jobs at Chesapeake Energy over the last couple of days.

The layoffs represent roughly 15% of the company’s workforce.

A current employee told KOCO 5 that it’s “like a bloodbath inside” and employees didn’t have any warning of the layoffs.

Chesapeake has gone through Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

“The company itself has had some difficulties because of their extremely large debt,” said Dewey Bartlett Jr., chairman of the Oklahoma Energy Producers Alliance.

Chesapeake reported debt of as much as $21.5 billion when it filed for bankruptcy.

“It’s a real tough, tough situation, obviously,” Bartlett said.

Bartlett said he isn’t shocked to hear about Chesapeake layoffs because the price of oil has plummeted throughout 2020.

Bartlett said he doesn’t think the layoffs will be the last for the Oklahoma City-based energy company. He said he expects about 1,000 jobs to be lost throughout the country and thinks the company is only about halfway through those losses.

Read More.

Tribal lands ruling: ‘Total chaos’ for oil?

Niina H. Farah | E&E News

A Supreme Court ruling yesterday declaring that nearly half of Oklahoma remains Native American reservation land is causing a stir among some oil executives who are wary of increased federal regulations.

In a 5-4 decision led by Justice Neil Gorsuch, the high court found that 19 million acres of land in the eastern half of the Sooner State was part of the Muscogee (Creek), Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw and Seminole Nations’ reservations.

Yesterday’s ruling stemmed from a dispute over whether an Oklahoma court had the power to convict Jimcy McGirt, a member of the Creek Nation, on charges of sexual abuse against a child (Greenwire, July 9).

The prospect of Congress taking action offered little comfort to prominent oil executive Dewey Bartlett, a former Tulsa mayor who runs Keener Oil & Gas Co.

“It’s going to be total chaos,” he said.

Bartlett said Congress should fix what he sees as a major problem, but he questioned whether lawmakers from the rest of the country would be willing to take action.

“It’s very unique to Oklahoma. With a lack of real political power, it’s going to be difficult,” he said. “The rest of the states could give a damn.”

The oil industry, Bartlett said, will be concerned about the validity of its leases. He said he is also worried that tribes could impose new taxes or environmental restrictions on developers.

Read More.