The following letter, along with a handout from The Wind Coalition, was distributed to the State Capitol House Members on Tuesday, March 24, 2015.
The Oklahoma Professional Economic Development Council (OEDC) is an association of 150 economic development professionals who support efforts to market the regions and communities throughout Oklahoma as places where people want to live and invest. We believe Oklahoma’s wind energy industry is a vital resource and valuable contributor to our state.
Over the last 12 years wind energy has contributed more than $6.1 billion of capital investment in Oklahoma while providing 15% of Oklahoma’s electricity – enough to power one million homes – while creating jobs and providing millions in royalties and tax revenue to counties, school districts and landowners. Oklahoma’s abundant wind power is affordable, clean, reliable, and perhaps most importantly, consumes none of our precious water.
For these reasons, we urge you to vote “NO” on both SB 498 and SB 501. Both of these bills will stifle wind energy development. SB 498 increases a wind developer’s requirements to qualify for the five-year ad valorem waiver. SB 501 significantly reduces tax credits currently available to wind developers.
These two pieces of legislation give the nation the impression that Oklahoma’s business climate is not stable or predictable and therefore not a place to invest. Oklahoma must stay competitive with our surrounding states by offering reasonable and effective business incentives and tax credits to the wind industry.
We greatly appreciate your support and ask you to please VOTE "NO" on SB 498 and SB 501.
Lyle Roggow, OEDC Legislative Chair and
Brent Kisling, OEDC Chair