WASHINGTON D.C. (Nexstar) — Texas and Oklahoma Republican Senators John Cornyn and Jim Inhofe are trying to shore up the oil industry and oil jobs in their states.
As the pandemic has all but dried-up demand for oil, the senators have introduced a bill that would keep the money flowing to energy companies and keep oil and gas workers on the payroll.
Texas provides about 40% of the nation’s oil and gas.
Cornyn says all that oil is good for jobs, but when oil prices plummet it means “a lot of people are getting laid off jobs.”
Cornyn and Inhofe’s bill, the “Save Jobs Act” would provide tax and regulatory relief for US energy companies hit hard by the pandemic.
“Be ready when the economy starts to rebound, as we are already starting to see, that they will have those people in place so they can hopefully get back to business as soon as possible,” Cornyn said. “We are looking to provide additional liquidity and sort of a lifeline to help.”
Inhofe says one in five jobs in his home state are directly tied to the energy industry.
“I think we will all benefit from that, certainly Oklahoma will,” Inhofe said. “The companies have to keep going. We have to keep producing oil and gas.”
Inhofe says the bill is only a short-term fix, but would incentivize companies who are tight on money to keep drilling.