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Environment


Ohio drilling tax compromise is in the works
Drillers may agree to a higher severance tax, but want an out from other business taxes
by WKSU's ANDY CHOW


Reporter
Andy Chow
 
Oil and gas drillers say they may be open to a higher severence tax if they get another exemption.
Courtesy of TIM RUDELL
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In The Region:

It appears a compromise has been brokered on changes to the taxes paid by oil and natural gas drillers. Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow has more on the proposal and what the drilling industry thinks about the new plan.

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As the shale gas industry grows, state officials have been debating a new severance tax rate – the amount collected on the gross receipts of drilling companies. 

Sources say a new proposal would set that rate at 2.5 percent. That lands right in the middle—between the Ohio House’s plan of 2.25 percent and Gov. John Kasich’s proposal of 2.75 percent. 

Tom Stewart, executive vice president of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, says his group likes the bill, but will still lobby for an exemption from another tax known as the Commercial Activity Tax. 

“In light of the fact that we would be agreeing to essentially 10 CAT taxes that they shouldn’t be piling on by adding another CAT tax because this industry has agreed to a taxing scheme that is specific to a very unique industry. There’s precedence for doing that in the creation of the Commercial Activity Tax. We believe we fall in that group as well.” 

The new plan is expected to be introduced this week. 

 

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