Nuclear Efforts Continue in Legislature

Efforts to promote nuclear power continued today with committee passage of another bill to incentivize construction of new power plant in Oklahoma.

Senate Bill 831, by state Sen. Brian Bingman and state Rep. Scott Martin, would create the “Nuclear Energy Incentives Act.” The measure is similar to a bill authored by Martin that already passed the Oklahoma House of Representatives on a bipartisan 60-19 vote.

“It’s important that we have several vehicles to deal with the issue of nuclear power in the Legislature,” said Martin, R-Norman. “If we are going to achieve national energy independence, we need to diversify production. Nuclear power could safely generate a significant amount of low-cost electricity in Oklahoma and I am pleased this effort is receiving bipartisan support in both the House and Senate.”

Senate Bill 831, which already cleared the state Senate on a 36-9 vote, would establish a review process for the Oklahoma Corporation Commission to consider nuclear power proposals and creates a task force to consider tax changes to encourage construction of a nuclear power plant.

Martin said he is working with ratepayers, utilities, environmental groups and other interested parties on the legislation.

“This bill is definitely still a work in progress,” said Martin. “My hope is that by the end of session we have legislation everyone can support.”

Senate Bill 831 passed out of the House Energy Committee today. It now proceeds to the floor of the Oklahoma House of Representatives.

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