Tribpedia: Texas Railroad Commission

Tribpedia

The Texas Railroad Commission (TRC) is a state agency with regulatory jurisdiction over the oil and gas industry, pipeline transporters, the natural gas and hazardous liquid pipeline industry, natural gas utilities, the LP-gas industry, and coal and uranium surface mining operations.

Railroad Commissioners are elected to six-year terms with one Commissioner seeking election every two years.

The Railroad Commission's ...

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Analysis: Smitherman Lost, but Remains in the Game

Texas Railroad Commission Chairman Barry Smitherman in his office on May 31, 2013.
Texas Railroad Commission Chairman Barry Smitherman in his office on May 31, 2013.

Railroad Commissioner Barry Smitherman lost his bid for attorney general, but he remains an oil and gas regulator and has sought industry help retiring campaign debts and perhaps landing a job. The potential for conflict may turn heads, but it's not an unusual situation, and Smitherman supporters say he is an ethical operator.

GOP Candidates for the Railroad Commission of Texas. Clockwise, from top left: Becky Berger, Malachi Boyuls, Ryan Sitton and former state Rep. Wayne Christian.
GOP Candidates for the Railroad Commission of Texas. Clockwise, from top left: Becky Berger, Malachi Boyuls, Ryan Sitton and former state Rep. Wayne Christian.

Ethics Debate Swirls in Railroad Commission Race

Ryan Sitton, a Republican candidate for railroad commissioner, says that if elected, he would remain involved with his company, which consults with some of the world’s largest oil and gas companies. Some of his opponents have raised concerns.

GOP Candidates for the Railroad Commission of Texas. Clockwise, from top left: Becky Berger, Malachi Boyuls, Ryan Sitton and former state Rep. Wayne Christian.
GOP Candidates for the Railroad Commission of Texas. Clockwise, from top left: Becky Berger, Malachi Boyuls, Ryan Sitton and former state Rep. Wayne Christian.

GOP Railroad Commission Hopefuls Try to Be Different

Four Republicans running for Texas railroad commissioner are working to differentiate themselves. But speaking Thursday at a Republican Women of Austin luncheon, they found plenty upon which to agree.

 

Texas Railroad Commission lead engineering technician for districts 1 and 2, Michael Polasek, inspects a salt water disposal injection well at a Heckman Water Resources commercial disposal facility on the LAMZA lease near Highway 80, January 22, 2012.
Texas Railroad Commission lead engineering technician for districts 1 and 2, Michael Polasek, inspects a salt water disposal injection well at a Heckman Water Resources commercial disposal facility on the LAMZA lease near Highway 80, January 22, 2012.

After Surprise Quakes, North Texans Speak of Impact

After a contentious town hall meeting concerning the possible links between wastewater injection and a spate of North Texas earthquakes, locals say they cannot afford to wait for state regulators to address the issue.

Crowds of visitors, lobbyists, and lawmakers turned out to the Texas capitol for the opening day of the 83rd legislative session, Jan. 8, 2013.
Crowds of visitors, lobbyists, and lawmakers turned out to the Texas capitol for the opening day of the 83rd legislative session, Jan. 8, 2013.

Liveblog: What's Left for the 83rd Legislature

The clock is ticking for lawmakers hard at work to pass prize bills in the final days of the 83rd legislative session. Here's a look at what's still outstanding. Check back often: We'll update this story as deals are brokered or broken. 

 

The Texas Railroad Commission, comprised of Chairman Barry T. Smitherman (center), and commissioners David Porter (left) and Christi Craddick (right) hold an open meeting in Austin, Texas on Jan. 15, 2013.
The Texas Railroad Commission, comprised of Chairman Barry T. Smitherman (center), and commissioners David Porter (left) and Christi Craddick (right) hold an open meeting in Austin, Texas on Jan. 15, 2013.

Bickering Erupts Among Texas Oil Regulators

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A day before a major legislative hearing about the future of the Railroad Commission, interpersonal tensions between the three commissioners boiled over at an open meeting. The commissioners also voted to approve new rules to make recycling oilfield wastewater easier.

The Texas Railroad Commission, comprised of Chairman Barry T. Smitherman (center), and commissioners David Porter (left) and Christi Craddick (right) hold an open meeting in Austin, Texas on Jan. 15, 2013.
The Texas Railroad Commission, comprised of Chairman Barry T. Smitherman (center), and commissioners David Porter (left) and Christi Craddick (right) hold an open meeting in Austin, Texas on Jan. 15, 2013.

On Railroad Commission Campaign Finance, a Battle Looms

Texas Weekly

The three Texas Railroad Commissioners get their campaign coffers replenished by the industry they regulate, and lawmakers carrying the RRC Sunset legislation seem determined to make a change. The commissioners are equally determined to hold firm.

The Texas Railroad Commission, comprised of Chairman Barry T. Smitherman (center), and commissioners David Porter (left) and Christi Craddick (right) hold an open meeting in Austin, Texas on Jan. 15, 2013.
The Texas Railroad Commission, comprised of Chairman Barry T. Smitherman (center), and commissioners David Porter (left) and Christi Craddick (right) hold an open meeting in Austin, Texas on Jan. 15, 2013.

Railroad Commissioner Wants Firearm Training for Employees

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With the debate over gun rights still raging in Texas and across the nation, the head of one Texas agency, the Railroad Commission, is pushing to provide training for employees so they can carry concealed handguns on the job.

Local pumper Bobby Thomason works on cleaning up an old well that was recently worked over to start producing again on a lease in Caldwell County near Luling, January 22, 2012.
Local pumper Bobby Thomason works on cleaning up an old well that was recently worked over to start producing again on a lease in Caldwell County near Luling, January 22, 2012.

Texas Railroad Commission Takes Steps to Modernize

The Texas Railroad Commission regulates one of the most advanced industries in the world — oil and gas drilling. Yet the commission’s software systems, many of its rules and even its name are from another era. But change is coming.

Railroad Commissioners Grilled on Fundraising Limits

Lawmakers took a close look at the state's Railroad Commission during a hearing this week, focusing many of their questions on proposals to limit gas and oil companies from giving political donations to commissioners.