The OIPA — OKOGA - What a Strange Organization

Oklahoma Oil and Gas Owners,

It’s no secret that Berlin is not a fan of the newly re-branded OIPA — OKOGA. They often complain that the oil and gas industry is unfairly targeted and that somehow oil and gas businesses are more deserving of special treatment than others.

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The OIPA — OKOGA supported House Bill 2150 and claim the measure is needed to give mineral rights owners the opportunity to file court cases to battle over-restrictive rules. Some municipalities in central Oklahoma such as Newcastle, Piedmont, Minco, Amber, Tuttle and Blanchard have implemented rules that arguably conflict with the state statutes that that already bar local jurisdictions from adopting ordinances, rules or regulations that exceed the Oklahoma Corporation Commission’s authority to regulate the oil and gas industry.

From Berlin’s reading, nothing is currently preventing mineral owners from suing local governments if the governments enact rules that would be considered a taking pursuant to Article 2 of the Oklahoma Constitution. Do we now need rules explicitly stating who can file lawsuits? Are we going to constantly push back against bad legislation with more bad legislation?

Berlin’s favorite part of the OIPA — OKOGA’s involvement in the case is that they previously supported a municipality against an independent operator when the operator was claiming that the municipality’s rules and regulations conflicted with the state statue’s regulating oil and gas development. This is weird, but unsurprising for the unprincipled.

More to follow,