Tuesday, September 9, 2008

There has been quite a bit of discussion around the State Capitol the past couple of months in regards to energy policy. Back in August, I unveiled a bill to incentivize local gas stations to put in fueling ports for CNG and other alternative fuels. Following that release, Speaker Benge held a press conference to discuss this and other policies, such as creating classes in the career tech system to teach students how to build and repair equipment for these ports and also for continued work on wind energy turbines. T. Boone Pickens has also unveiled a plan called "The Pickens Plan" that hopes to break our addiction to foreign oil and develop local alternatives.
I'm hoping this discussion will continue, along with ways to bring down the current gas prices. In order to help this along, I'm holding an energy forum at the State Capitol on Friday, September 19th to discuss the upcoming bills and possible solutions that other states have pursued. I have invited several experts in the various energy and tax fields to present to the legislators in attendance and also those in the public that wish to attend. The meeting will begin at 9:00 A.M. in the State Senate Chamber and if you could, please RSVP to my office to let them know so we can prepare enough seating.
I'm hoping the invited guests will shed light on where we failed in pursuing alternative energy policies in the past and reveal where some of the positive solutions appear on the horizon. I also hope we provide ideas where we can start now on developing sound policies for the upcoming generations. We need to look at CNG, wind, hydrogen, ethanol, switch grass and the other ideas currently out there. This too serious a problem for partisan politics to come into play, so I'm hoping several of my colleagues will be able to attend and we can work on these ideas. This shouldn't be Democrats, Republicans, Independents or other parties trying to take credit; simply we need Oklahomans working together to create a realistic energy policy for our home state and I hope this meeting will start that discussion.
It is an honor to represent your views at the State Capitol. If you wish to contact me and discuss one of these or another issue, I can be reached at my office in Oklahoma City toll-free at 1-800-522-8502, or directly at 1-405-557-7305. My e-mail address is joedorman@okhouse.gov at work. My mailing address is PO Box 559, Rush Springs, OK 73082 and my website is http://www.joedorman.com/ on the Internet. Thank you for taking time to read this column and I look forward to seeing you soon.

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