MSC in the Philadelphia Inquirer: Let Natural Gas Flow Without Severance Levy

We applaud Rep. Greg Vitali’s honesty regarding Gov. Wolf’s massive proposed energy tax increase, which would give the state the nation’s highest effective tax rate on natural gas production, 17.1 percent, according to the Independent Fiscal Office (“Pa. needs Wolf plan to invest in energy,” June 18). While Wolf and other higher energy tax advocates frame this debate with the imperative to fund schools and cut property taxes, Vitali makes it clear that students would not benefit directly from Wolf’s tax. In fact, severance revenues would subsidize more expensive and less reliable energy forms.

That’s not to suggest that wind, solar, and other alternative energy forms are not important. In fact, according to a recent Harvard Business School study, shale gas development “and mitigating climate change are actually complementary.” When government picks winners and losers, we get more losers.

Erica Clayton Wright
Marcellus Shale Coalition
Pittsburgh, Pa.

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