Oil and Gas Companies Warn of No New Refineries in Ohio if Severance Tax Happens

From the Cleveland Plain Dealer:
Oil and gas interests keeping tabs on severance tax 
Similarly, no fewer than five companies or organizations with interests in Ohio's burgeoning natural gas industry have joined the state's lobbying ranks since the last biennial budget in 2011. 
The roster includes major corporations such as Halliburton and Hess and upstarts whose fortunes are tied to the future of hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking. 
To help pay for income tax cuts, Kasich wants companies involved in high-volume horizontal drilling to pay higher severance taxes on oil and gas profits. Under the governor's proposal, which if approved would take effect in October, these companies eventually would pay a 4 percent tax on oil and natural gas liquid and a 1 percent tax on natural gas. 
Kasich has said he wants Ohio to share in the prosperity made possible by its resource-rich Utica shale deposits. Groups such as the American Petroleum Institute, or API, and the Ohio Oil & Gas Association have lined up against the plan. 
API's Ohio Petroleum Council has snagged lobbyist Robert Eshenbaugh, formerly with the Ohio Home Builders Association, to be a "legislative analyst" and front man on the matter. Lawmakers saw significance in the move, and Eshenbaugh already has been an outspoken critic of the severance tax plan, calling it "ill-conceived and ill-timed." 
Behind the scenes, the conversations are more blunt. 
"Those oil and gas guys, they will pull me aside," said Foley. "They know I support a severance tax increase. But those guys will pull me aside in the hallways and say this is bull --, that they're never going to build another refinery in Ohio."
Read the whole article here.

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