Believe it or not, good ideas and hard work do take place inside the state Legislature. There certainly are some "oil"-riginal ideas floating out of 23rd Street and N. Lincoln Boulevard.
Rep. Shane Jett, R-Tecumseh, has an ingenious idea for bringing more tourism dollars to Central Oklahoma. The Republican legislator wants to build an oil derrick across the Oklahoma River. No, he's not planning to drill for oil under the river; Jett wants the derrick to be a replica of an old-style petroleum rig to commemorate the state's heritage.
Jett explained his gushing idea on the OETA program "Oklahoma Horizon." The fake rig would reach 1,100 feet in height, surpassing France's Eiffel Tower " a key point to Jett, who believes it would get people talking.
"You want tourists to go, 'And ya know, it's taller than the Eiffel Tower'; that's part of the marketing of it," Jett said in the broadcast.
The oil tower could also be a destination point for the Devon Energy boats that now travel up and down the river, Jett said.
But the legislator also has a "wow" plan for the tourist trap. He wants water to shoot out of cannons near the top of the rig. The cannons would be timed to shoot off at certain points in the day.
"That's so people will schedule to come see Oklahoma City specifically to see this thing go off," Jett said in the television interview. "We want to re-create that 'wow, what an awesome thing of nature.'"
There certainly is a wow factor going here.
But here is the "wowest" of all the wows: The story indicated the cost to build Jett's homage to black gold would be around $100 million. Holy wow! The Legislature has trouble finding money to fix roads and paying decent teacher salaries, but this guy wants to spend $100 million on a glorified waterspout?