"Applying A Windfall Tax To Fracking Would Give Ohio $2.5 billion over ten years"
Despite the sizable public concern over the considerable consequences, Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) and Republicans are gung-ho on moving forward with fracking for natural gas in the state. But one progressive policy group says that if they must “frack,” then make sure that Ohioans also see the profits, not just the consequences. Innovation Ohio released a report calling on lawmakers to extend Ohio’s severance tax, which no applies mainly to coal extraction, to natural gas and oil mining. Noting that Ohio’s tax rate is “now second-lowest” in the nation, the report finds that if Ohio raises the severance rate “to the same level as Texas — 24th in the nation — Ohio would stand to gain $2.5 billion in new revenue in the next decade.” The group also recommended a landowner bill of rights to protect property owners who sell or lease land rights to oil and gas companies. The Ohio Petroleum Council, however, labeled this “windfall profits tax proposal” an “old, failed idea…that could smother a growing industry and stifle the economic growth and energy security that many predict if the exploration proceeds safely and successfully.”