By Conrad Dudderar
Voter turnout was light – but the result was overwhelming.
City of Yukon voters this week approved an Oklahoma Natural Gas franchise election by a 78.76% margin.
Ten polling places (11 precincts) were open Tuesday, March 2 for the election, which grants ONG a 25-year franchise.
The final vote tally was 241 “yes” votes and 65 “no votes.”
The margins were 163-32 on election day and 78-33 in absentee mail and early voting.
“Oklahoma Natural Gas is proud to partner with Yukon and appreciates the support of the community,” said Martie Oyler, ONG’s community relations manager.
“We look forward to continuing to provide safe, reliable natural gas service to the homes and businesses in Yukon for decades to come.”
Approval of the franchise election does not impact customers’ rates, Oyler emphasized.
ONG is Oklahoma’s largest natural gas distributor in the state, serving more than 861,000 customers.
This new franchise agreement outlines detailed rights and responsibilities between the City of Yukon and ONG for the next 25 years.
It allows the utility company to work within the city’s public ways to “construct, maintain and operate” a natural gas system.
The agreement provides compensation to the City of Yukon “in the form of a 2% royalty.”
The revenue collected by ONG on behalf of the City of Yukon helps with future growth and improvements, Oyler said.
The only change ONG residential customers will see is the line item description on their utility bills.
All other major utility companies now have franchise agreements with the City of Yukon.
Edmond voters rejected its ONG franchise election by a 1,066-688 margin.