© 2021 WKSU
Public Radio News for Northeast Ohio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

A Longshot Again: What Gov. Kasich's Gas and Oil Tax Could Mean To The Industry

photo of natural gas drilling pad
The Ohio Oil and Gas Association's Shawn Bennett said that simply suggesting a severance tax increase could be a bad idea.

Leaders in the Ohio House have already said they’re not interested in raising taxes on the oil and gas industry. But Gov. John Kasich is still pushing his severance tax proposal.

Gov. John Kasich’s budget would raise the tax rate on oil and gas drillers to 6.5 percent. That’s a significant increase from the current rate of a few cents per 1,000 cubic feet.

Shawn Bennett with the Ohio Oil and Gas Association says Ohio is competing with other states to attract drillers and simply suggesting a tax increase can be detrimental.

“You have to look at where you’re getting the best return on your investment right now; we have to recognize that the Utica is a shale play it is not the only shale play. So you can’t treat as if this is the only game in town,” he said.

As they have for years, opponents argue now is not the time to raise the severance tax, given the low prices on oil and gas.

Gov. John Kasich has said he’s worried that raising the severance tax will become a voter-initiated ballot issue if lawmakers don’t act.