Natural gas tax comes up for debate in Pennsylvania House
HARRISBURG, Pa. — Legislation to impose a tax on Marcellus Shale natural gas production is getting closer to a vote in Pennsylvania’s House of Representatives, although the long-sought tax still faces hurdles in the nation’s No. 2 gas state.
Debate over amendments lasted several hours Monday night, and was expected to continue Tuesday. A final vote may not occur before December.
Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf and House Democrats have pressed Republican majority leaders to allow a tax vote.
The bill imposes a volume tax that rises with the price of natural gas. It would raise about $100 million in a full year for the cash-strapped state, using 2016 production and current prices.
Monday’s amendments added industry-friendly provisions designed to speed up the state’s issuance of pollution-control permits, similar to provisions the Senate passed with a natural gas tax in July.