OK-SAFE, Inc. Blog

November 2, 2012

Who’s Funding SQ 764?


OK-SAFE, Inc. – A search on Campaign Reporting on the OK Ethics Commission website reveals who the money is behind the “Yes on SQ 764” effort. (Ethics number 312002).  SQ 764 creates the Water Infrastructure Credit Enhancement Reserve Fund and would allow the Oklahoma Water Resources Board (OWRB) to issue up to $300 M in bonds.

This measure would provide the funding to implement the highly controversial Water for 2060 Act, (HB 3055), one of the most dangerous bills ever passed by the Republican-led Oklahoma Legislature.

HB 3055 reads “the public policy of this state is to establish and work toward a goal of consuming no more fresh water in the year 2060 than is consumed statewide in the year 2012”.

If passed, SQ 764 would provide the funds to make this dangerous and costly bill a reality in OK, leading to the rationing of freshwater, regardless of its abundance.  (See below the Campaign Contributions chart for further details on SQ 764).

Yes on SQ 764 PAC

The “Yes on SQ 764” PAC was established in June of this year by the Oklahoma Municipal League, the OK Rural Water Association (ORWA), and the State Chamber Of Oklahoma.  Chair of this committee is Homer Nicholson, Mayor of Ponca City; Treasurer is Arnella Karges of the State Chamber of Oklahoma; and Deputy Treasurer is Billy G. Simms, Pres. of ORWA.

The big contributors to this committee were BancFirst Corp., contributing a whopping $15,000, and the Chickasaw Nation, who contributed $10,000.  Other donors included a general contractor from Manhattan, KS, a law firm from Dallas, TX, and a financial advisor firm, also in Dallas.

How very…regional.

Last minute contributors included the State Chamber with a contribution of $3,800.

Campaign Contributions for “Yes on SQ 764”:

Name & Address of Contributor Occupation & Employer or Principal Business Activity Date Accepted Amount of Contribution
BancFirst Corporation Banking 11-Sep-12 $15,000.00
Chickasaw Nation Native American Tribe 20-Sep-12 $10,000.00
RICK SMITH FINANCIAL ADVISOR (sic) 24-Aug-12 $5,000.00
Municipal Finance Services Municipal Financial Advisor 12-Oct-12 $5,000.00
The Public Finance Law Group PLLC Law Firm 9-Oct-12 $5,000.00
State Chamber Of Oklahoma Legislative Advocates For Business 10/31/12 $3,800.00
Okla Rural Water Association PAC Special Interest Association 10/29/12 $2,500.00
ORWA Assurance Group Business 10/29/12 $2,000.00
FirstSouthwest Financial Advisor – Dallas, TX 10/31/12 $2,000.00
Butler Engineering Consulting Engineering 13-Sep-12 $1,500.00
HDR Engineering, Inc. Consulting Engineering 10-Sep-12 $1,500.00
Holloway Updike & Bellen, Inc. Civil Engineering – Consulting 22-Aug-12 $1,000.00
United Trenching Incorporated Water & Sanitary Sewer Installation 22-Aug-12 $1,000.00
Krapff-Reynolds Construction Company Utility Contractor 28-Sep-12 $1,000.00
JACOB A. BACHELOR, PC BOND COUNSEL ATTORNEY 24-Sep-12 $1,000.00
Lasso Corp Oil & Gas Investment 20-Sep-12 $1,000.00
M&E Consultants, LLC Civil Engineering 20-Sep-12 $1,000.00
AEP-PSO Electric Utility 20-Sep-12 $1,000.00
Walters-Morgan Construction, Inc. General Contractor – Municipal Infrastructure – Manhattan, KS 17-Sep-12 $1,000.00
Jess Mark Nichols Farms Farming 11-Sep-12 $1,000.00
WDB Engineering PLLC Consulting Engineering 16-Oct-12 $1,000.00
Bank Of Cushing Banking 5-Oct-12 $1,000.00
McCall, Parkhurst & Horton, L.L.P. Law Firm – Dallas, TX 5-Oct-12 $1,000.00
Wind, Water, And Agriculture (wwag) Pac Political Action Committee 10/25/12 $1,000.00
F. FORD DRUMMOND SELF EMPLOYED 22-Aug-12 $500.00
JOE E TARON, DDS RETIRED 24-Sep-12 $500.00
JAMES GAMMILL EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR 10/29/12 $500.00
Myers Engineering Consulting Engineers 10-Oct-12 $250.00
MARK F. SELVIDGE ATTORNEY 2-Oct-12 $250.00
J.D. STRONG DIRECTOR – OWRB 22-Oct-12 $200.00
JOE S FREEMAN CHIEF – OWRB 18-Sep-12 $100.00
JENNIFER WASINGER OWRB 1-Oct-12 $75.00

Total contributions to date, including last minute contributions: $68,675.

SQ 764 Recommended Vote: No

Title: Creates the Water Infrastructure Credit Enhancement Reserve Fund; allows the OWRB to issue bonds

Ballot Language: This measure amends the Oklahoma Constitution. It adds a new Section 39A to Article 10. It would allow the Oklahoma Water Resources Board to issue bonds. Any bonds issued would be used to provide a reserve fund for the Board. The fund would be a reserve fund for certain water resource and sewage treatment funding programs. The fund could only be used to pay other bonds and obligations for the funding programs. The bonds could only be issued after other monies and sources are used for repayment. The bonds would be general obligation bonds. Not more than Three Hundred Million Dollars worth of bonds could be issued. The Legislature would provide the monies to pay for the bonds. The Legislature would provide for methods for issuing the bonds. The Legislature would provide for how the fund is administered.

Comments: This measure would provide the funding to implement the highly controversial Water for 2060 Act, (HB 3055), one of the most dangerous bills ever passed by the Republican-led Oklahoma Legislature.

HB 3055 reads the public policy of this state is to establish and work toward a goal of consuming no more fresh water in the year 2060 than is consumed statewide in the year 2012”.

If passed, SQ 764 would provide the funds to make this dangerous and costly bill a reality in OK, potentially leading to the rationing of freshwater in this state, regardless of abundance.

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4 Comments »

  1. If you see anything that has the endorsement of the state chamber of commerce, you can make a safe bet that the citizens are going to get screwed. They are the biggest proponents Agenda 21. I see this legislation simply as a means for cap & trade of water. VOTE NO!

    Comment by Julie — November 5, 2012 @ 5:32 am

  2. correction –How do the tribes benefit? How does this specific tribe benefit?

    Comment by Linda Murphy — November 3, 2012 @ 10:56 am

    • Good question. A lot of land/water is held in tribal hands. It is our understanding that the tribes fought against HB 3055, the Water for 2060 Act, yet HB 3055 passed. Was some sort of a deal reached with the tribe? Or, are they hedging their bets?

      There’s an effort to gain control of the Arbuckle-Simpson aquifer and it’s source, the Blue River (via the President’s Great American Outdoors Initiative).
      Another question to be asked is “What’s in it for BancFirst? They’ve contributed $15,000 to this committee – for the interest on the loans/bonds? What about the out-of-state firms? Who is trying to gain control over our access to water, and what is it going to cost the people of Oklahoma? That’s what we’re concerned about.

      Comment by oksafeinc — November 3, 2012 @ 12:49 pm

  3. Chickasaw Nation Native American Tribe 20-Sep-12 $10,000.00;
    How can this SQ be in the best interest of the citizens and state of Oklahoma when the Tribe that has been suing the state over water rights is supporting this with the above contribution. How does the tribes benefit in this? That is an obvious question I haven’t heard discussed or answered. What is your opinion?

    Comment by Linda Murphy — November 3, 2012 @ 10:54 am


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