Senate Urged to Reject House Severance Tax

Thursday, Sept. 30, 2010

HARRISBURG, PA, Sept. 30, 2010 – The Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry is asking the state Senate to reject the uncompetitive, job-killing natural gas severance tax bill that narrowly passed the House this week.

"Only in Pennsylvania would some lawmakers think it a good idea to take an industry that holds tremendous economic and job-creating potential for the Commonwealth and its residents and attempt to tax it at the highest rate in the nation," PA Chamber Vice President of Government and Public Affairs Gene Barr said. "If Pennsylvania has to tax the Marcellus Shale industry, the rate should at least be competitive with other drilling states."

The House’s plan would impose a 10 percent severance tax (39-cents per thousand cubic feet of gas) on natural gas, the highest rate in the nation at double the current worst shale state tax.

Barr said the proposal is just the latest example of the economically short-sighted mindset among some lawmakers in Harrisburg that it is better to favor taxpayer-subsidized and government mandated clean energy jobs than foster abundant clean energy jobs in the private sector.

"It is possible for the legislature to pass a responsible severance tax that addresses the various concerns that have been raised, environmental and otherwise, while not harming the economic promise of the Marcellus Shale industry," Barr said. "The tax proposal approved by the House sends a clear message to the industry and to all Pennsylvanians that there is no interest in embracing the one bit of economic good news to come out of the recession and anemic recovery."


The Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry is the state’s largest broad-based business advocacy organization, with its statewide membership comprising businesses of all sizes and across all industry sectors. The PA Chamber is The Statewide Voice of Business™.