The Duncan Banner

April 23, 2013

Commissioners discuss pipeline crossing policies

Derrick Miller
The Duncan Banner

DUNCAN —

Stephens County could join the ranks of other Oklahoma counties and start charging for pipeline crossings.
During Monday’s regular meeting, the Board of Stephens County Commissioners discussed making changes to the policies for Stephens County Application for permit public service/pipeline crossing. The county charges a deposit of $250 per crossing, but returns the deposit following the project.
The commissioners looked at how a couple of other counties in Oklahoma handle pipeline crossing fees. Grady County charges $400 per crossing and keeps the funds. That county also has several stipulations that have to be in place before a crossing can be awarded. Roger Mills County charges $1,000 per crossing and doesn’t return any of the money.
“We’re probably the only county in Oklahoma that doesn’t charge for a road crossing,” Dee Bowen, District 3 commissioner, said. “I don’t know that for sure.”
Bowen said, as long as he can remember, the county has always requested a refundable $250 deposit per crossing. But the commissioners discussed possibly changing this by charging for the crossings with the funds feeding into the county’s Road Fund.
The commissioners elected not to take action on the item during Monday’s meeting, but may revisit the item during the next regular meeting. Bowen said the week would give each commissioner an opportunity to determine the best course of action.
“We should take the information home and study it,” Bowen said.
In other action:
The commissioners approved the item with little discussion, and signed off on the agreement. Darrell Sparks, being the District 1 commissioner, had to initial each page of the agreement.