OKLAHOMA CITY – A bill that would help counties convert their fleets to compressed natural gas and increase state infrastructure devoted to compressed natural gas fuel stations was approved today by the Oklahoma House of Representatives. House Bill 2954, by state Rep. Josh Cockroft, would use existing funds generated by the gross production tax to help counties convert their vehicles to compressed natural gas and potentially further develop fuel stations that could be used by state and county government and the general public.
“Compressed natural gas is an investment that has been proven to save the state money and we are basically giving counties the opportunity to get in on those savings to further benefit taxpayers,” said Cockroft, R-Tecumseh. “Compressed natural gas is a cheaper fuel than gasoline, but also continues to benefit the oil and gas industry in Oklahoma. Using it in government vehicles is a win-win.”
Cockroft noted that the Oklahoma Department of Transportation recorded a savings of approximately $32,690 per month after converting 174 vehicles to compressed natural gas. There are approximately 2,400 county vehicles excluding law enforcement vehicles in the state , he said.
The legislation would require tracking of fuel savings and help the counties develop fuel stations that would be available to counties, municipalities, the state fleet and the general public, Cockroft said. It expands on Gov. Mary Fallin’s efforts to advance Oklahoma’s energy policy, he said.
House Bill 2954 was approved by a vote of 71-17 and will now proceed to the Oklahoma Senate.