Protect Your Pocketbooks – Take a Stand Against Unjust Regulations

To The Editor:

An important issue is brewing at the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality (OKDEQ) and it’s about to have a major impact on your family's budget. The OKDEQ is poised to rubber stamp a rule making process that will forcibly mandate a major Oklahoma energy provider to switch the fuels they use to generate electricity. That sounds simple enough, but it’s a decision, agreed upon by unelected bureaucrats that will raise your family’s electric rates by at least 12 percent. Some estimates are as much as 20 percemt, that’s a rate increase of $200 or more per Oklahoma household.

What makes this issue so important, are the methods being used to get a deal done. It’s a little-known scheme called sue and settle.” A group sues a utility, private company or even a charity in hopes of settling the case out of court and getting their way.

In this case, the Sierra Club’s environmental extremists are working with the Obama EPA to force fuel switching, which will raise our electric rates. They’re relying on a term called “Regional Haze” and citing the Wichita Wildlife Mountain Refuge, and we all know this is purely a political ploy to push green energy on Oklahoma and waste hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars.

What’s important: these electric plants are being forced to incur hundreds of millions of dollars in costs and those costs are passed along to you through rate hikes for no good reason. Regional haze is not a measurable standard and does not affect your health. It’s a visibility standard for our national parks. But the Sierra Club is using regional haze as part of the plan to “sue-and-settle.

What’s at issue is the heavy hand of the federal government coming in to our communities and forcing our utilities to adhere to unrealistic standards along with a billion-dollar price tag, which we have to pick up.

Currently, the OKDEQ is welcoming public comment on this very issue. Our organization is encouraging electricity ratepayers like you to contact the OKDEQ and express your concerns about plans to raise your rates.  I encourage you to contact your elected officials and the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality and discourage them from agreeing to rubber-stamp the state implementation plan for our utilities. 















Matt Ball, Oklahoma State Director, Americans for Prosperity

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