Proposed New Energy Taxes

Proposed Pandemic-Era Tax Hikes

Even as the COVID-19 pandemic is creating numerous challenges for Pennsylvania’s employers and workforce, Gov. Tom Wolf continues to target the natural gas industry to pay for additional state spending. His desire to go after the industry with more taxes is nothing new – this is the seventh year in a row that he has put forth such a proposal. This time, he has targeted revenues from an additional tax to go toward workforce development programs. Unfortunately, additional energy taxes will increase the cost of doing business in Pennsylvania – effectively slowing the state’s economic recovery from the pandemic and exacerbating our workforce issues.

As our coalition has continually noted, the natural gas industry is already taxed – with impact tax revenues that have already raised nearly $2 billion and are bringing in more than what some other states collect in a severance tax. The impact tax is unique to Pennsylvania and provides funding to every county throughout the Commonwealth – and keeping this competitive tax system in place is what our coalition is fighting to keep intact.

If we allow the natural gas industry to thrive without a punitive severance tax, the results could be:

$60 billion increase in Pennsylvania GDP

100,000 jobs

$2 billion in additional state tax revenue

4.5 trillion cubic feet in gas demand

Source: Forge the Future report

As we collectively work to jumpstart Pennsylvania’s economy, elected officials should support public policies that encourage the natural gas industry to thrive and bring revenue, jobs and energy independence to Pennsylvania. It is counterintuitive to place additional tax burdens on one of the state’s greatest competitive advantages – especially during a pandemic, when the state needs steady, good-paying jobs and an affordable, clean source of domestic energy.
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