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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

State Rep. Camille "Bud" George
D-74 of Clearfield County
www.pahouse.com/George

 

 

                                   

 

Rep. George: Energy panel OKs severance tax bill  

 

HARRISBURG, June 23 – State Rep. Camille "Bud" George, D-74 of Clearfield County, said the House Environmental and Resources Committee today approved his legislation that would enable Pennsylvania to receive a fair return for its valuable natural gas supplies.

 

"House Bill 1489 would ensure that Pennsylvania joins almost every gas-rich state in seeking a fair return for its taxpayers for the removal of a natural resource owned by the Commonwealth and requiring use of taxpayer-paid infrastructure to extract," said Rep. George, committee chair. "The Natural Resource Severance Tax Act creates a fair contract with the gas industry for its profitable ventures in Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale gas deposit."

 

HB 1489, approved on a 15-11 committee vote, calls for a 5 percent tax on the gross value of gas extracted and 4.7-cents for every thousand cubic feet of gas produced. The tax would not apply to smaller "stripper" wells producing 60,000 standard cubic feet a day or less.

 

An amendment offered by Rep. George, detailing how severance tax revenues would be shared, was approved on a 20-6 vote by the panel. The tax is projected to generate roughly $600 million annually for state coffers by 2013-14.

 

The revenues would be distributed as follows:

● 60 percent to the General Fund;

● 3 percent for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, LIHEAP;

● 15 percent to the Environmental Stewardship Fund;

● 4 percent to the Hazardous Sites Cleanup Fund;

● 5 percent to the Liquid Fuels Tax Fund;

● 4.5 percent to municipalities where natural gas is extracted;

● 4.5 percent to counties where natural gas is extracted;

● 2 percent each to the state Game and Fish and Boat commissions.

 

The legislation now faces consideration before the full House.

 

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