Proposed severance tax a disservice to Pa.'s energy growth, overall economy

May 3, 2018

Pennsylvania has a long history of intertwining environmental stewardship with economic growth. When William Penn was establishing the colony, he negotiated fishing rights with the native tribes. He helped plan Philadelphia by determining where the best places for public parks and tree-lined streets should be – and where merchant districts and ports should be built. That tradition carries on today, as the businesses in the state leverage our abundant natural resources into economic growth. Thanks in large part to federal tax reform, as well as the state’s skilled workforce and proximity to key markets, the state is primed for generational growth – but there are major headwinds.

To start, the state is already at a competitive disadvantage with its highest effective corporate tax rate in the country of 9.99 percent. Pennsylvania’s burdensome, costly and unpredictable regulatory and permitting process also costs us jobs and investment. We are very encouraged that both Governor Wolf and the state legislature are moving forward on key reforms to make much needed changes to how the state bureaucracies function. It is these types of pro-growth policies that are needed to realize the opportunity ahead of us.

However, what is absolutely not needed are higher energy taxes on businesses, families and consumers. Unfortunately, public sector unions, whose appetites for higher government spending and lavish pension benefits are already costing families and businesses dearly with ever-increasing property taxes, continue the push for even higher government spending. Despite the fact that the state is on track to end this year with a net fiscal surplus thanks in large part to federal tax reform, these special interests want the energy industry and consumers to pay more. The legislature should reject this call for more spending.

As Gov. Wolf himself stated....

Read entire article at Philadelphia Business Journal.

 

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