Senate sends oil tax bill back to committee

The state Senate was to have voted on its oil tax bill Thursday but instead sent Senate Bill 192 back to the Rules Committee, a signal that there are insufficient votes in the Senate Majority to pass the bill.

The majority organization is a coalition of Republicans and Democrats.

The Senate has been working all session to develop its version of a bill that would reduce the state’s oil and gas production tax. The House passed its proposal, House Bill 110, last year.

As currently written the SB 192 is substantially different than HB 110 through its incorporation of several mechanisms to lower taxes on new oil produced in addition to current production from North Slope fields.

HB 110 would enact a general tax reduction but would retain the basic structure of the current tax.

The financial effects of the two proposals differ significantly as well. HB 110 would lower taxes on industry by about $1.4 billion a year according to estimates by the Department of Revenue.

Estimates have not been done yet on the newest version of SB 192, but earlier versions would reduce taxes by about $200 million.

04/20/2012 - 6:17am