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Legislative shortsightedness on water may harm Oklahoma

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board Published: February 14, 2013

We support repeal of obsolete laws and agree that an unenforceable statutory “goal” is ultimately meaningless. HB 1562's passage won't affect conservation efforts — but lawmakers' dismissive attitude toward long-term planning could.

From the 1950s to 1966, Oklahoma City expanded from 68 square miles to 649 and increased access to and control of water supply. Those actions were driven not by then-current shortages, but primarily by future projected needs. Does anyone today doubt the wisdom of those actions more than 50 years ago?

Lawmakers' short-term thinking on infrastructure needs has already battered the Oklahoma Capitol. Its crumbling exterior now threatens citizens' safety and its eroded sewage pipes pose potential health hazards. Heaven help us if lawmakers apply the same mindset that made the state Capitol a disgrace to Oklahoma's long-term water needs.

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board
The Oklahoman Editorial Board consists of Gary Pierson, President and CEO of The Oklahoma Publishing Company; Christopher P. Reen, president and publisher of The Oklahoman; Kelly Dyer Fry, editor and vice president of news; Christy Gaylord...
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