Sierra Club hands out F’s to Republicans and A’s to Democrats on environmental votes

The Oklahoma Chapter of the Sierra Club is out with its environmental scorecard of the 2019 Oklahoma legislative session, one that targeted Republicans with F’s and Democrats with A’s.

Of the three F grades in the Senate and five in the state House, all went to Republicans. The four A’s in the Senate went to Democrats. The 16 A grades given in the State House went to Democrats.

In announcing the scorecard, the Sierra Club was also critical of Gov. Kevin Stitt.

“The 2019 legislative session, formally known as the First Regular Session of the 57th Legislature, marked the first legislative session under the Governorship of Kevin Stitt. The overall tone was subdued, while the overall message was clear—all power was bent towards a “profit over people” Governorship that favors business interests over the public good.”

The Sierra Club also said the legislative session “also resulted in the granting of immense power to the Office of the Governor
regarding the Governor’s power and ability to name and appoint agency heads, including positions that directly impact the State’s ability to protect, or not, the environment across the State of Oklahoma.”

The Chapter also criticized the governor for appointing Ken Wagner to be the state’s new Secretary of Energy and the Environment.
“Secretary Wagner clearly revealed his support of the Governor’s agenda by actively participating in the legislative process. He personally introduced, and then heavily lobbied for, SB1003, the so-called “Environmental Audit Privilege Act,” a bill that
completely favors corporate interests over the interests of the public good and will greatly impact the environmental health of the state and its citizens.”

The three State Senators who were given an F grade on their environmental votes were: Sens. Michael Bergstrom, Nathan Dahm and Gary Stanislawski.

The five House members who were flunked on their votes were: Reps. Chad Caldwell, Denise Crosswhite Hader, Sean Roberts, Judd Strom  and Kevin West.

A’s in the Senate went to Sens. Michael Brooks, Kay Floyd, Julia Kirt and Kevin Matthews.

Those in the House who got A grades were Democratic Reps: Kelly Albright, Forrest Bennett, Meloyde Blancett, Chelsey Branham, Denise Brewer, Mickey Dollens, Jason Dunnington, Andy Fugate, Regina Goodwin, Ben Loring, Cyndi Munson, Monroe Nichols, Melissa Provenzana, Jocob Rosencrants, Emily Virgin and John Waldron.

The grades in the Senate were based on votes of five bills:

HB2095, by Rep. Terry O’Donnell, R-Catoosa and Sen. Stephanie Bice, R-Oklahoma City, extends the one-time tax credit for investments in qualified cleanburning motor vehicle fuel vehicles and equipment to December 31, 2027. It provides the credit for fuel delivery equipment including EV equipment will be
45 percent of the cost of the qualified clean-burning motor vehicle fuel property.
– Oklahoma Sierra Club SUPPORTED this bill.
-The bill was signed into law.

SB0702, by Sen. Greg McCortney, R-Ada and Rep. Charles McCall, R-Atoka, establishes a moratorium on the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) permitting of any discharge from a subject mine to streams fed or supported by water emanating from sensitive sole source groundwater basins or subbasins, excepting cases where the DEQ issues a permit to correct compliance issues.
-Oklahoma Sierra Club SUPPORTED this bill.
-The bill stalled in the House of Representatives.

SB0826, by Sen. Stephanie Bice, R-Oklahoma City and Rep. Dustin Roberts, R-Durant, creates a one-time tax credit for investments in qualified 100 percent electric vehicles of $3,000 and plug-in hybrid vehicles of $1,500 and property related to servicing the vehicles.
-Oklahoma Sierra Club SUPPORTED this bill.
-The bill stalled in the House of Representatives.

SB1001, by Sen. James Leewright, R-Bristow and Rep. Dustin Roberts, R-Durant, prohibits political subdivisions from restricting, taxing, prohibiting or regulating the use, disposition or sale of auxiliary containers.
– Oklahoma Sierra Club OPPOSED this bill.
– The bill was signed into law.

SB1003, by Sen. Mark Allen, R-Spiro and Rep. Mark McBride, R-Moore, creates the Oklahoma Environmental, Health and Safety Audit Privilege Act to encourage voluntary compliance with environmental and occupational health and safety laws. It prohibits a regulatory agency from adopting a rule or impose a condition that circumvents the purpose of the act.
– Oklahoma Sierra Club OPPOSED this bill.
– The bill was signed into law.

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House grades were based on votes of the following bills:

HB1403, by Rep. Justin Humphrey, R-Lane and Sen. David Bullard, R-Durant, authorizes the Oklahoma Water Resources Board to determine instream flows for specific, defined streams, decide upon committees dedicated to these streams and use data on instream flow determinations and make specific kinds of determinations on water use based on this data.
– Oklahoma Sierra Club SUPPORTED this bill.
– The bill stalled in the Senate.

HB2095, by Rep. Terry O’Donnell, R-Catoosa and Sen. Stephanie Bice, R-Oklahoma City, extends the one-time tax credit for investments in qualified cleanburning motor vehicle fuel vehicles and equipment to December 31, 2027. It provides the credit for fuel delivery equipment including EV equipment will be 45 percent of the cost of the qualified clean-burning motor vehicle fuel property.
– Oklahoma Sierra Club SUPPORTED this bill.
-The bill was signed into law.

HB2150, by Rep. John Pfeiffer, R-Mulhall and Sen. Mark Allen, R-Spiro, requires it to be considered a taking pursuant to Article 2 of the Oklahoma Constitution and relevant statutes whenever a municipality, county or other political subdivision, other than the Corporation Commission, adopts or implements an ordinance, resolution, rule, regulation or other form of official policy  concerning oil and gas operations that has the effect of substantially interfering with the use and enjoyment of the mineral estate.
– Oklahoma Sierra Club OPPOSED this bill.
– The bill stalled in the Senate.

SB1001, by Sen. James Leewright, R-Bristow and Rep. Dustin Roberts, R-Durant, prohibits political subdivisions from restricting, taxing, prohibiting or regulating the use, disposition or sale of auxiliary containers.
– Oklahoma Sierra Club OPPOSED this bill.
– The bill was signed into law.

SB1003, by Sen. Mark Allen, R-Spiro and Rep. Mark McBride, R-Moore, creates the Oklahoma Environmental, Health and Safety Audit Privilege Act to encourage voluntary compliance with environmental and occupational health and safety laws. It prohibits a regulatory agency from adopting a rule or impose a condition that circumvents the purpose of the act.
– Oklahoma Sierra Club OPPOSED this bill.
– The bill was signed into law.

Click here to review entire report card.

 

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