Meet and greet with the industry and others plus screenings of "Fracknation" planned on May 29


The City of Taft, Taft Chamber of Commerce, Independent Oil Producers Agency and other supporters of the petroleum industry are sponsoring a big educational event on May 29 in conjunction with plans by the city to pass a resolution of support for the industry and protests the ongoing attempts to add taxes and more regulations.

It's a show of support for the oil industry in an oil town.

It is also an outgrowth of the call by Taft City Councilman and business owner Orchel Krier to support the industry after another bill to impose a 9.5 percent tax on oil in california is being discussed in the State Senate.

The Chamber event will include free showings of conservative documentary filmmakers Phelim McAleer and Ann McElhinney's film “Fracknation.”

The film will be shown at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. on May 29 at the Taft Fox Theatre.

McElhinney was a speaker at last year's West Kern Petroleum Summit hosted by Taft College.

In between the two screenings, at 5 pm., there will be a meet and greet with petroleum industry leaders at the Historic Fort on North Tenth Street.

The public is invited to attend.

That event will include speakers representatives of elected officials at the state, federal and local levels.

Both events are aimed towards education – the effects that limits on hydraulic fracturing, commonly called fracking, will have on the oil companies' ability to produce oil and the effects that it will have on employment and the economy and the ongoing attempts to pass a severance tax on oil.

“This educational event will show our appreciation to the petroleum industry and will focus on and address the ripple effect of regulars including higher costs, potential loss of jobs and our overall concern on the impact to our local and national economy,” Chamber Special Events Coordinator Shannon Jones said.

Representatives from the oil industry, including the majors, independents and contractors are being encouraged to set up booths with information about their firms and what they are doing to keep operating, Jones said.

The Taft City Council is scheduled to pass a resolution at its May 20 meeting supporting the oil industry.