February 10, 2017
Texas Oil & Gas Association Welcomes Robust, Science-Based Regulation and Supports Properly Funded Railroad Commission of Texas
AUSTIN, TX – Todd Staples, president of the Texas Oil & Gas Association, testified before the Senate Finance Committee today that the Railroad Commission of Texas must be properly funded to secure the staffing and technology necessary to keep pace with the Texas oil and natural gas industry. Specifically, Staples noted TXOGA’s support for funding which enables the agency to hire more inspectors, upgrade RRC technology and attract and retain the experts necessary to execute the agency’s many technical functions.
“Texas oil and natural gas companies support science-based regulations and welcome robust oversight from the experts at the Texas Railroad Commission,” said Staples. “We believe the Legislature must properly fund the RRC to effectively and efficiently implement regulations that encourage responsible oil and natural gas activity and protect the environment, workers and communities.”
Regarding funding, Staples noted that in 2015 the Texas oil and natural gas industry paid $13.8 billion in state and local taxes and state royalties and close to $90 million in fees to the Texas Railroad Commission. “The oil and natural gas industry pays billions of dollars every year in taxes, fees and state royalties so any appropriation necessary to operate the agency is either directly or indirectly paid for by the industry,” he said. “In 2015, the Legislature’s appropriation to the Railroad Commission was less than the amount the oil and natural industry paid in fees to the Railroad Commission. Money is coming into state coffers from the oil and natural gas industry that can and should be used to properly fund the Railroad Commission charged with overseeing the oil and natural gas industry.”