Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D) proposed enacting a 5% “severance tax on natural gas production to generate as much as” $13.2 billionover a decade “for public education, transportation, and property-tax relief.” Schwartz, during a conference call with reporters: “All Pennsylvanians deserve to share in the shale wealth.” She characterized a 5% tax as a “moderate, reasonable” rate.
Gov. Tom Corbett (R) “has fought efforts to impose a severance tax, maintaining that it would hamper development of a rapidly growing gas-drilling industry.” Corbett energy adviser Patrick Henderson: “Gov. Corbett is standing with the middle class. … Pennsylvanians want more jobs and fewer taxes.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)
Then-Gov. Ed Rendell (D) “also attempted to create an extraction tax” but “failed to get the necessary support from the legislature. If she becomes governor, Schwartz will likely have to deal with many of the same obstacles he faced.” (PoliticsPA.com)
More Schwartz: “There are real reasons in requiring the energy companies to pay a very modest tax similar to what they’re paying in every other state where they’re doing drilling.” (Harrisburg Patriot-News)
Corbett campaign manager Mike Barley, in a release: “Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz’s proposal to drastically increase taxes on the shale gas industry will cost Pennsylvanians good-paying, middle-class jobs by forcing the industry to relocate to more business and energy friendly states.” (Harrisburg Patriot News)
— Julie Sobel