WV Gov. Tomblin Proposes to LOWER Oil & Gas Severance Tax

Ohio Gov. John “foreigner hunter” Kasich has been hellbent on raising Ohio’s oil and gas severance tax–for years. As recently as last June Kasich predicted his 6.5% proposed severance tax would get adopted (see Kasich Predicts Severance Tax Deal Will Happen, Others Say No). Last fall OH Republicans continued to flirt with the idea (see Ohio Legislators Continue Dalliance with Kasich Severance Tax). The state still has not raised it, even though Kasich has lobbied hard for over three years. Pennsylvania, on the other hand, continues to consider converting their better impact fee for a less better severance tax. Republicans there are getting weak-kneed too (see Some PA Republicans Beginning to Cave on Severance Tax). It seems the severance tax is like the mythical siren song attempting to lure states onto the rocks of less drilling. But hold on to your hat. In contrast to OH and PA, there’s one state, and one governor, who’s not falling for higher severance taxes. PA Democrats trot out West Virginia as their shining example of how severance taxes don’t chase drillers away–to bolster their argument that PA should adopt a severance tax. Guess what? WV figured out high severance taxes DO chase drillers away, and WV’s Democrat governor, Earl Ray Tomblin, is proposing the state LOWER its oil and gas severance tax in 2016! It’s a devastating blow to PA Gov. Tom Wolf and his obsessive-compulsive insistence on a severance tax…

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