Kasich’s got plans for ‘13
Tax and reform packages are back on the table, joined by school funding and the turnpike
By Joe Vardon
The “fracking” tax boost/income-tax-cut package that Gov. John Kasich couldn’t push through the legislature in 2012 appears primed for passage next year.
Kasich held his annual year-end review yesterday at the Statehouse, an event where the Republican governor and GOP legislative leaders tied a bow around 2012’s accomplishments and looked ahead to what’s in store for 2013. The two Republicans whose chambers refused to take up Kasich’s proposal to raise severance taxes on shale drillers and cut the state’s income tax, Ohio House Speaker William G. Batchelder of Medina and outgoing Senate President Tom Niehaus of New Richmond, both predicted that Kasich would win approval for the plan in 2013.
“I don’t think there’s any question we ultimately will support it,” Batchelder said, with Kasich seated to his left.
It was the Republican Batchelder’s House that stripped Kasich’s fracking tax increase from the roughly 3,000 pages of legislation the governor proposed as part of a mid-budget-cycle review. Kasich proposed taxing crude oil and natural-gas liquids drawn from horizontally drilled wells at 1.5 percent of gross receipts, eventually increasing to 4 percent, and dry gas at 1 percent.
The state currently charges a 20-cents-per-barrel tax on crude oil, a 3-cent tax per 10,000 cubic feet of dry gas and no tax for gas liquids, regardless of how the wells was drilled. Kasich’s plan would exempt roughly 90 percent of the state’s conventional wells — about 44,000 wells producing small amounts of oil — from any severance tax.
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