Disastrous PA Severance Tax Bill Debated in House, Makes Progress

Warning: Pennsylvania House Republicans are about to kill Marcellus drilling in PA by adopting a severance tax on top of the existing impact tax–creating the highest taxation of the oil and gas industry in the United States. Is PA ready to trade away an entire industry propping up its sorry finances–just to give money to Philly teacher’s unions? This is a TRAGEDY in the making. RINOsaur Gene DiGirolamo (“Republican” from the Philadelphia area) introduced a Frankenstein bill earlier this year called House Bill (HB) 1401 (see PA Frankenstein House Bill Merges Severance Tax & Minimum Royalty). The bill would tack a 3.2% severance tax on top of the existing ~5% impact tax (called a “fee”) already levied on Marcellus drillers. As soon as the bill made its way out of committee to the full House for consideration, over one hundred amendments were attached to it. Most of those amendments have been ruled “out of order” and removed from the bill, reviving the bill which is now under active consideration. A number of important amendments still remain and some of those were voted on yesterday. What you need to know front and center is that this bill is about a massive transference of wealth from those who produce wealth by working hard (drilling companies and landowners) to those who don’t (teacher’s unions). One of the amendments to HB 1401 passed yesterday reserves the first $150 million of the new severance tax solely for Big Education. The entire amount of revenue raised from a new severance tax, according to RINOsaur DiGirolamo, is expected to be $150 million. That is, ALL of the severance tax will go to Big Education, as payback. And you thought MDN was just spouting off, using hyperbole, ignorant or just plain mistaken all these years we’ve been screaming at the top of our lungs that the severance tax is nothing more than payback to Philly teachers for voting Tom Wolf into office. We (don’t) hate to say it: we were right. And now traitorous Republicans are making it possible for this to happen–for Wolf to get his way and corruptly funnel money back to the unions that elected him. Is any one else outraged at this? Are House Republicans asleep at the wheel???…

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