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Sine Die is upon us…for now.

Both the Texas and Oklahoma Legislatures have adjourned, but not without some late-session excitement (i.e. drama). The Oklahoma Legislature approved a concurrent special session and may have a second session later this summer to consider tax cuts.

Meanwhile in Texas, a late notice from the House Investigations Committee announced 20 articles of impeachment against the State Attorney General which was passed and now a Senate trial is pending. In between the craziness, many pieces of legislation have found their way to the respective state governor’s desk. As we have done all spring, SPEER has monitored and provided educational input where appropriate and will be developing a session wrap-up to review important changes in our region.

In this newsletter:

  • Texas 88th Legislature Activities
  • Public Utility Commissioner Confirmed
  • Oklahoma 59th Legislature Activities
  • Oklahoma Corporation Commission New Vice Chairman
  • Local Policy Actions
  • Events and Webinars: 2023 SPEER Policy + Industry Workshop
  • What We’re Reading/Hearing

Texas 88th Legislature Activities

The Texas Legislature has officially adjourned, with over 9,000 bills filed, considered, and some sent to the Governor for final approval. Over 4,096 bills to be exact! The only statutorily required bill, the General Appropriations Bill was approved, however, several priority items of the Governor and Lt. Governor were not passed, which begged the question if there will be a special session later this summer or not. The Governor did not make us wait to call for an immediate special session on Monday. While the state focus will not likely impact our efforts, we will monitor.

While we develop a more in-depth review of the regular session, here are a few initial takeaways:

Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) and Demand Response (DR): DERs and DR were merged into SB 1699 which has been sent to the Governor for his signature. This bill allows DER owners and aggregators to become part of the state’s grid. It also requires the PUCT to establish goals in the ERCOT region to reduce the average total residential load through demand response participation. 

Texas Grid: Lastly, several of the major grid-related bills were added to HB 1500 the PUCT sunset legislation. This bill not only continues operations for the PUCT but includes a cost cap of $1B for the PCM (Performance Credit Mechanism) which has been estimated to cost ratepayers over $5B annually without these guardrails in place. Other grid bills such as SB 2627 which establishes a power plant loan program also passed out of both the House and Senate.

Energy Codes: Relating to codes, there are some good and some with questions yet to be answered. On the good side, SB 2453 has been sent to the governor. This bill would allow the State Energy Conservation Office to adopt newer statewide energy codes. HB 2127 was also sent to the Governor, however, there are still many legal questions surrounding this bill. It would preempt local government’s ability to adopt codes already regulated by the state. While building and energy codes may be exempt from this, there are still concerns relating to other areas of codes.

Speaking of state preemption, SB 1860 also awaits Governor Abbott’s signature. This bill would require local governments to gain approval from SECO before adopting a climate charter. 

If you are interested in learning more about any of these bills or viewing any hearings, you can find that information and recordings on the Texas Legislature website.SPEER will monitor the special session as needed. If you are interested in any of the bills we tracked this session, please visit SPEER's Texas policy page.

Public Utility Commissioner Confirmed

On May 26th Commissioner Kathleen Jackson was unanimously confirmed by the Texas State Senate. She has served on the PUCT since August 2022 and has been leading the efforts on energy efficiency for the Commission since then. Read the press release. Congratulations to Commissioner Jackson!

Oklahoma 59th Legislature Activities

The 59th Oklahoma Legislative session has concluded for now. However, Governor Stitt has signaled that he is considering calling a special session for the Legislature to consider tax cuts. It is important to note, a similar special session was called last year and the State Senate did not act on the Governor’s tax cut request.

Relating to codes legislation, the state legislature sent HB 2425 to the governor for his signature and that was approved. This bill would simply require any modifications to adopted state codes to be referred to the Oklahoma Uniform Building Code Commission. 

One of the few energy efficiency bills we tracked this session, SB 433, failed to move out of its Senate committee. This bill would have abolished the Oklahoma Corporation Commission Energy Conservation Services Division and moved it to the Oklahoma Department of Commerce. 


SPEER will continue to monitor any updates relating to a special session as needed. If you are interested any of the bills we tracked this session, please visit the SPEER Policy Oklahoma page which can be found here

Oklahoma Corporation Commission New Vice Chairman

On May 11th the OCC voted to name Kim David Vice Chairman effective on May 22, 2023. The Commission members remain the same with J. Todd Hiett staying as Chairman and Bob Anthony as Commissioner. Vice Chairman David has served on the OCC since January 2023. Congratulations to Vice Chair David!

Local Policy Updates

Recent and Upcoming Local Government Policy Actions: 

Austin: On June 1st the Austin City Council will consider approving a mutual aid agreement ratification with CenterPoint Energy, New Braunfels Utilities, and CPS Energy for an amount not to exceed $1.75M. For more information, please see the Austin City Council Agenda page.

Dallas: On May 24th the Dallas City Council authorized the construction services contract for the installation of solar PV and battery storage systems at Bachman Recreation Center. For more information, please see the Dallas City Council Agenda page.

If you are aware of upcoming policy discussions or actions in your area and would like to share them in this newsletter, please send information to

Events + Webinars

SPEER's 2023 Policy + Industry Workshop Registration is Open!

Don't miss SPEER's next event! Join SPEER members, partners, and allies for two days of energy dialogue in Austin on September 14-15. We'll be joined by utilities, implementers, manufacturers, state and local governments, energy service companies, and more as we discuss the changing energy landscape, regional grid issues, record-setting demand, demand-side solutions as well as national trends. As the 88th Texas legislative session and 59th Oklahoma legislative session both conclude we will exchange thoughts on energy policies:

  • How to improve energy efficiency adoption in the South-central region
  • Ways to better engage stakeholders with policymakers
  • Increasing the adoption of DERs
Save Your Spot

Looking for increased brand visibility, reputation enhancement, and the opportunity to be associated with a cause that resonates with your audience? We invite you to become an event sponsor and showcase your brand's commitment to energy efficiency and the growing clean energy movement.

These sponsorships are important to us and help continue the sustaining efforts of SPEER as we educate and support energy efficiency across the Texas and Oklahoma region. As extreme weather continues to wreak havoc on our aging grid, especially our transmission and distribution system, change has never been more necessary.

Show your support and sponsor today!

SPEER: Learn how to identify energy burdens and improve energy equity as our member TEPRI presents on their co-developed Energy Equity Inspector, a geospatial tool to help identify and highlight the depth of energy burdens and environmental impacts for communities in our region. The webinar is today, May 31st, at 10 AM Central. Register here.

TEPRI: TEPRI is hosting an in-person event titled Promising Innovations for Our Energy Future. The program will include remarks from PUCT Commissioner Will McAdams and industry leaders participating in the PUCT’s ADER Taskforce. If you are interested in attending, please register here.

Texas Tribune: The Texas Tribune Festival will be happening in downtown Austin on September 21-23rd. Get your tickets by May 31st for early bird pricing. If you are interested in attending, please buy your tickets here.

What We're Reading...

REPORT: Reports of the Independent Market Monitor for the ERCOT Region Independent Market Monitor Carrie Bivens

The 2023 Texas legislative session started with a record budget surplus and ended with an impeached attorney general Texas Tribune

As Texas legislative session nears end, Republican lawmakers try one last push against renewables KUT

REPORT: Energy Efficiency And Demand-Response: Tools To Address Texas’ Reliability Challenges: Summary – ACEEE 

REPORT: Seasonal Assessment of Resource Adequacy for the ERCOT Region (SARA) Summer 2023  – ERCOT

A Free Market, If You Can Keep It Texas Energy and Power Newsletter

No ‘silver bullet’: Report lays out fixes for interconnection delays plaguing US renewables and storage Utility Dive

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