If the Texas Legislature agrees with the Sunset Advisory Commission, there will be big changes for the Texas Railroad Commission.
Brett Ship reports for WFAA
The new plan recommends one commissioner called the Texas Oil and Gas Commissioner who is elected to serve a 4 year term. Now what could possibly go wrong with that plan?
The concern is that arrangement puts a lot of power into the hands of a single elected official — someone who might be influenced by campaign contributions.
I bet the Big Gas Mafia is ecstatic. This will be the best funded race in history. But there won’t be an election until 2014 so Governor Perry will appoint the Texas Oil and Gas Commissioner who will serve until then. And what could possibly go wrong with that idea? Perry appointed the TCEQ Commissioners and look at how great that agency works.
Here’s the scariest part:
Michael Williams, who chairs the Railroad Commission, takes credit for the idea.
I’ll just let you connect all the dots but I do have a nice graphic for you.
About Sharon Wilson
Sharon Wilson is considered a leading citizen expert on the impacts of shale oil and gas extraction. She is the go-to person whether it’s top EPA officials from D.C., national and international news networks, or residents facing the shock of eminent domain and the devastating environmental effects of natural gas development in their backyards.
- Web |
- More Posts(5117)
This is a good example of the admonition: Don’t ever think that things can’t get worse, because you just might be proven wrong. It’s hard to imagine anything worse than the Texas Railroad Commission, but it looks like we may have it in store for us if the Legislature approves this plan.
Asking the Legislature to keep the Railroad Commission instead of sticking us with a Perry appointee as the sole O&G commissioner for two years is like asking to have your foot cut off instead of removing your whole leg. It's tough, but we've gotta do just that: Please, Texas Legislature, (choke, gag) keep the Railroad Commission if this is your plan for replacing it.
Politicians are all BBO's! The whole system is crooked from the basement of the Booger County courthouse all the way to the top of the Dome in Austin!! This proposal is a perfect example of how bad things can get for us ordinary peasants who live on the land! O&G continues to rule!
I understand your comment completely and agree with most of it. However, consider that Williams (if he does in fact become "The One") is the only one of the three member current commission who ever voted for individual rights (at least once) and made comments that in some cases he believed individual property rights were being violated. (I believe that was in reference to MIPA's). Commissioner Williams, I believe you are a TRUE republican and that you don't discount republican principals when push comes to shove. Do away with the unconstitutional practice of Rule 37's and/or deny them. It's a start to let everyone know you represent THE PEOPLE of this great state and not special interests.
You have GOT to be kidding.
Anonymous 1 says
You know how if you get busy multi-tasking while you're cooking and scorch the heck out of whatever's on the stove and try to skim off the part that's not stuck, saying that well, we can eat this, it's not so bad, and then all the family looks at you with sad eyes, knowing it's a skillet of crap. I've got those same eyes when I read about skimming for something good about Michael Williams' service on the Texas Railroad Commmission. It's crap, no matter how hard you try to make something better out of the situation.
When the Dallas Morning News is forced off it's collective lazy ass to cover natural gas news once a month it's never good news. The best part of this is when industry insiders admit the TRC is so gutted they can't even deal with the demands of the drilling boom… lucky for us. I love how they list the reason for cutting the commissioners from 3 to 1 is "to cut down on commissioners' campaign fundraising from the industry they regulate" when it should read "to cut down the amount of fundraising the industry has to do to regulate the TRC" Other terrifying news from DMN, sunset commission recommends shifting groundwater protection in oil and gas production from TCEQ to the TRC. Oh shit, there goes the groundwater… And the only two decent recommendations put forth to the commission, that the head of the TCEQ be elected and atleast one of three appointed commissioners must have a background in public health or medicine, were completely rejected.
I will be praying that Perry nominates Big Al from Region 6 EPA. Wouldn't that be perfect?!?
If this is the best the Sunset Commission can do–then, it's time for the sun to set on the Sunset Commission!
I was merely pointing out Williams is the least of 3 evils.
Well, you have to admit that Anon is right about one thing. Williams is for sure a TRUE republican–screw the people and take care of the corporations. He has remained true to those that bought him.
Since Kay Bailey said she will not run for re-election I think Williams is hoping to stay on with RRC until he can run for her Senate seat.
Won't that be grand! if that happens I think I will be the weiny who lets go of the rope and screams WTF until I hit the fire.
Anonymous 1 says
scuba, I laughed out loud at that! If that scenario happens, I'm afraid I'll jump with you.
I laughed out loud too, Anon 1. I read it at a stop light on the way home and I laughed like a maniac.
Tim Ruggiero says
I've met Michael Williams, and he's a scumbag just like the rest of them. I had the pleasure of standing behind him at the EPA meeting in Ft. Worth where he was having what he thought was a private conversation with some Industry flack, and was disparaging the good mayor of DISH, TX, Calvin Tillman. I stepped in and told him that if he really felt that way, he would go say that to Tillman's face.
Just because Williams may have on rare occasion done something that resulted in the favor of the people hardly means he has morals or ethics. He's another dirty politican who takes lots of money from Industry-and direction. Most of you will recall that he was one of the first from the TRRC screaming about the EPA order in Parker County, stating that there are 'claims of contaminated water in WY, NM and the EPA didn't get involved on behalf of any of those homeowners…so he seems to think that the state was able to fend off the Feds. Whatever. I sent him an email reminding him that we have documented contaminated water, and the EPA didn't step in on our behalf, either. Was it because YOU, Mr. Williams, on behalf of the State of Texas intervened?
I think I'll send in my 'application' for the Oil and Gas Commissioner post. I'm a Conservative, have more actual experience than interior decorator Jones and CPA "I Don't Know" Porter. What's not to like?
Need any help campaigning, just let me know…your friendly neighbor.
Hey Friendly Neighbor. Let's get together with your other neighbor and have a glass of wine.
A very interesting idea, Tim is a Republican, which means 99% of the people who vote in the primary just need to pick a person with an "R" by their name. With the little extra kick that Tim will get from people in the DFW metroplex, he would likely win the primary, then his "R" next to any "D" that might show up in the general election, well, that's in the bag.
As much as I would like it, I know that industry would never let that happen. Calvin toyed with the same idea a few years ago and realized that he could never win the Republican primary and a Democrat would not win against a Republican.
Never underestimate the power of a good rebellion.