Midland and Odessa chambers advocate for Permian Basin in Washington D.C.

Midland and Odessa chambers advocate for Permian Basin in Washington D.C.

The chambers of commerce from both Midland and Odessa headed to Washington D.C. last week to advocate as a joint force for the Permian Basin.

Over 60 citizens from Midland and Odessa participated in the “Fly-in to DC,” a biennial trip for the two chambers that began in 2022. They included professionals in the oil and gas industry, entrepreneurs, civic leaders, educators and students from the University of Texas Permian Basin. Over two days, elected officials and policy experts discussed issues close to the hearts of citizens of West Texas, including workforce development, healthcare, immigration, energy and more. The trip was presented by Diamondback Energy.

Fox News Chief Washington Correspondent Mike Emanuel, Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz of Texas, Congressman August Pfluger and other members of Congress were among the featured speakers. The local chambers and attending organizations held break out meetings with legislators and staff on Capitol Hill.

The “Fly-in to DC” trips were inspired by Odessa and Midland Legislative Days in Austin, which has been going on for over two decades, according to Renee Earls, president and CEO of the Odessa Chamber.

“These programs are an opportunity for our cities to come together with one voice,” Earls said.

Evan Thomas, Midland Chamber president and CEO, said participants hear from experts with diverse perspectives on important issues.

“At the same time, they get an opportunity to introduce themselves to lawmakers and other decision-makers and serve as ambassadors for our communities,” Thomas said.

Congressman Pfluger touted Odessa and Midland’s “important role on the world stage.”

“Our oil and gas industry is at the center of energy, economic and national security for our nation,” he said. “Our industry has a great story to tell. Our people have a great story to tell. We need to tell it.”

Legislative Days at the state Capitol in Austin is slated for February 2025.

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