Partisan Group Wants to Double or Triple WV’s NGL Severance Tax

tax increaseThe partisan (Democrat) West Virginia Center on Budget & Policy, which pretends to be nonpartisan and above the political fray but isn’t, has just published a so-called policy brief titled “A Win-Win Marcellus Shale Tax Incentive” (full copy below). The “brief” attempts to make the case for doubling or tripling the severance tax on natural gas liquids produced in WV (from 5% to 10% or 15%)–giving exemptions to the tax increase for those who keep the NGLs extracted in the state. The recommendation hopes to boost the attractiveness of petrochemical plants like the proposed Odebrecht cracker plant that would use ethane, the primary NGL extracted in WV, by making it more expensive to send WV’s ethane across the border, to say either Shell’s proposed cracker in PA or PTT Global’s proposed cracker in OH. The tone of the “report” is that WV has been raped and pillaged in the past–their precious coal stolen and carted away to other states–and WV can’t let that history repeat itself again. Better to shut down drilling rather than have any of it “exported” to other states. It is misguided and faulty thinking…

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