Open Letter to Texas Transportation Leaders
September 3, 2020
Dear Chairman Bugg and Commissioners,
Energy industry leaders and partners in the Permian Basin and across the State of Texas are pleased to join together in thanking the Texas Transportation Commission, Governor Abbott and state leaders for adopting the 2021 Unified Transportation Program, thereby directing the remainder of Texas Department of Transportation’s $600 million in strategic state funding over the next year to make life-saving road improvements in the Permian Basin.
Representing a wide range of regional organizations, elected officials, and community leaders, we are proud to actively work together to address this critical need for road improvements in the Permian. We fully support TxDOT’s mission to “End the Streak” and implement proven road safety strategies and recognize the challenges that come with allocating limited resources throughout a large and diverse state. We believe that dedicating funds to Permian Basin road projects will support and sustain economic recovery, growth, and opportunity across our state for decades to come.
Despite the challenges the collapse in global demand due to COVID-19 has brought for Texas, our industry and our communities, the United States Geological Survey estimates undiscovered resources across the Permian Basin approximate to a combined 92 billion barrels of oil and 300 trillion cubic feet of gas. Together with a low break-even price and its proximity to the Gulf coast, we are confident in the promise of the Permian Basin.
Thanks to the increasing amount of export commodities like liquified natural gas (LNG) and oil flowing from the Permian Basin, Texas ports are creating some of the highest export revenues in the nation. According to the Texas Port Authority Advisory Committee, four Texas ports, including Port Houston, the Port of Corpus Christi, the Port of Beaumont, and Port Freeport were cited among the top ten fastest growing U.S. ports in terms of export revenue this past year. Growing worldwide consumer demand coupled with the growth of the energy sector requires an investment in infrastructure upgrades, such as those in TxDOT’s 2021 UTP, now.
These TxDOT funds will be leveraged with local, federal, private and other TxDOT funding sources to improve safety, connectivity, and congestion relief, enabling the state to maintain its critical role as the largest supplier of secure energy and the lowest cost producer in the free world.
Thank you for your strategic statewide approach to addressing infrastructure needs that impact the safety of our citizens and advance our economic and energy security.
Patrick Payton, Mayor, City of Midland
David Turner, Mayor, City of Odessa
Bob Harvey, CEO, Greater Houston Partnership
Bobby Burns, President & CEO, Midland Chamber of Commerce
Wesley Bownds, Chairman, Midland Development Corporation
Russell Meyers, CEO, Midland Memorial Hospital
Renee Earls, President & CEO, Odessa Chamber of Commerce
Tim Edgmon, Chairman, Odessa Development Corporation
Ben Shepperd, President, Permian Basin Petroleum Association
Tracee Bentley, President & CEO, Permian Strategic Partnership
Don L. Evans, Chairman, Permian Strategic Partnership
Roger Guenther, CEO, Port Houston
Sean Strawbridge, CEO, Port of Corpus Christi Authority
Grant Billingsley, Executive Director, Scharbauer Foundation
Jason Modglin, President, Texas Alliance of Energy Producers
Tom Craddick, Representative, Texas House of Representatives
Brooks Landgraf, Representative, Texas House of Representatives
Todd Staples, President, Texas Oil and Gas Association
Phyllis Saathoff, Vice President, Texas Ports Association
Kel Seliger, Senator, Texas State Senate
Mark A. Houser, CEO, University Lands