STATEMENT: State Chamber study fails to make persuasive case for maintaining oil and gas subsidies

For Immediate Release: January 14, 2014

Oklahoma Policy Institute released the following statement about the State Chamber of Oklahoma’s report defending tax breaks for horizontal drilling, which are costing the state over $250 million annually in lost revenue:

The State Chamber’s case against curbing oil and gas incentives has major shortcomings. It provides incomplete information on how Oklahoma’s tax structure compares to other states. It ignores the fact that even if Oklahoma eliminated tax breaks for horizontal drilling, the effective tax rate would remain below or equal to most rival energy-producing states, including Texas.

Even without these subsidies, Oklahoma will be an attractive location to drill due to our ample reserves, existing levels of production, skilled workforce, and established infrastructure. The question facing Oklahoma is not whether to support a robust and healthy energy industry. It is whether to continue to provide unnecessary subsidies when we are already struggling to fund schools, public safety, and other core services.

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Gene Perry worked for OK Policy from 2011 to 2019. He is a native Oklahoman and a citizen of the Cherokee Nation. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a B.A. in history and an M.A. in journalism.

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