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City of Bartlesville

Posted: Apr 25, 2019 3:11 PMUpdated: Apr 25, 2019 3:55 PM

Councilman Stuart: Gov. Stitt Took Away Local Rights

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Max Gross

Oklahoma governor Kevin Stitt recently signed legislation to prevent municipalities from instituting a fee on single-use plastic and paper bags. Bartlesville ward two city councilman Paul Stuart said that this is an infringement of municipal rights. Stuart says his biggest issue isn’t with the legislation itself, but the fact that the city doesn’t have the ability to choose.

Senate bill 1001 received the minimum 51 votes to get through the House of Representatives before it was signed by Gov. Stitt. District 11 representative Derrell Fincher did not vote for this bill in the house, neither did Senator Julie Daniels. Fincher stated that he was a proponent of local control.

Councilman Stuart says issues like this leave the cities powerless because they have no way to fight the legislation once it comes across the governor’s desk. Stuart also says that Stitt took a pro-local control stance during a conversation they had previously before he flipped his stance to sign the bill.

Stuart says the situation would be different if the state dealt with the responsibilities of plastic bag cleanup or other matters. However, since it is the responsibility of the city the councilman believes they should have been given a say.


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