Tomorrow morning at 10 a.m., the Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee will hear HB 458, the oil and gas industry bill that weakens protections for landowners and prohibits local government from regulating almost all aspects of the oil and gas industry.
KRC understands that an amendment will be offered to require the state Department of Mines and Minerals to develop regulations governing the location of "gathering lines," those pipelines transporting gas from wellhead to pipelines. However, the broad preemption language would remain, preventing local governments from regulating any other aspect of oil and gas impacts on private property and the environment, even though there is NO state regulation of many of those impacts.
KRC's position is simple -- local governments should not be deprived of their power to protect their citizens from oil and gas industry abuses and damage to private lands UNLESS AND UNTIL there are fully protective state standards to regulate the industry and prevent such damage and abuse. ABSENT A MANDATE TO THE STATE TO DEVELOP A REGULATORY PROGRAM FOR ALL IMPACTS OF OIL AND GAS DEVELOPMENT ON PRIVATE AND PUBLIC LANDS, counties must be free to reasonably regulate to prevent harm. It is irresponsible to pre-empt local regulation without extending state protections before removing local authority.
PLEASE CALL THIS EVENING OR IN THE MORNING BEFORE 10 AM TO SENATORS HARRIS, LEEPER, KELLY, McGAHA, TORI, THAYER, PENDLETON, SHAUGHNESSY, MOORE, BOSWELL AND HERRON. Urge them to OPPOSE HB458 so long as it preempts local regulation without first requiring state action to protect the public and environment. To talk with the Senators call 1-502-564-8100. To leave a message, call 1-800-372-7181. To send a fax, list each name on the cover sheet and send the fax to 1-502-564-6543.