Study says PA losing money by not taxing gas drilling

    A liberal-leaning policy center says Pennsylvania would have about 55 million more dollars in revenue right now, if lawmakers had passed a natural gas severance tax last year.

    A liberal-leaning policy center says Pennsylvania would have about 55 million more dollars in revenue right now, if lawmakers had passed a natural gas severance tax last year.

    The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center has set up a severance tax ticker on its website, estimating the amount of revenue the commonwealth has lost to-date by not imposing a tax on natural gas drilling.  Research Director Mike Wood says the meter has reached 55 million dollars.

    “What we want to do is, we wanted to demonstrate to lawmakers how much revenue is being lost by not having a severance tax,” Wood says.  “It accumulates about $11,000 and hour, and has grown to about 55 million dollars to date from October 1, 2009, when the tax was supposed to be started.”

    The ticker is only a rough estimate.
    The center has taken the amount of well permits from Department of Environmental Protection data, and is estimating their production rates, based on figures from the Department of Revenue.
    A severance tax passed the House last year, but didn’t make it through the Senate.

    Republican leaders have indicated they’ll be more willing to consider a natural gas levy during this year’s budget negotiations.

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