Thursday, January 14, 2010

Governor Again Calls On General Assembly To Pass Natural Gas Severance Tax

At a press conference today announcing $128.3 million in revenues from State Forest Marcellus Shale natural gas leasing, Gov. Rendell called on the General Assembly to pass a natural gas production severance tax. His letter to the General Assembly read in part--
"As you know, last year I proposed that we impose a tax on the Marcellus natural gas extraction. Based on information from the industry, I pulled back from that proposal with the intent of giving the industry a year to get its sea legs and embed itself in Pennsylvania.
"We have seen tremendous activity in the past year, with DEP issuing 1,984 Marcellus Shale drilling permits, and in the same period operators reporting 763 Marcellus wells drilled (compared to just 195 Marcellus wells drilled in 2008). The industry has informed DEP that it expects it will seek to permit 5,200 Marcellus wells just in 2010: a huge jump or a tripling of the number of Marcellus wells now permitted.
"This week's auction results of more than $4,000 bid per acre (for DCNR State Forest leases) anticipated - is further proof of how well the industry is doing and how much this commodity is valued."
He said any revenues from the severance tax must go into the General Fund to help balance the budget, for the time being.
NewsClips: Rendell To Revive Request For Severance Tax
Rendell Presses For Extraction Tax On Marcellus Shale

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