Natural Gas Impact Tax Works for Butler County

MSC joins Butler County Commissioners, area elected officials and other local leaders to discuss the positive benefit of the natural gas tax

BUTLER, Pa. – Awarded more than $8 million this year, Pennsylvania’s existing tax on natural gas – the impact fee – is a winning policy solution that works for Butler County, industry and local leaders said during an event this morning at Alameda Park.

The event, featuring remarks from the Butler County Commissioners, state Senator Scott Hutchinson, state Representative Marci Mustello, state Representative Jeff Pyle, state Representative Jim Marshall and Allegheny Township Supervisor Chuck Stowe, explored how county and municipal leaders have leveraged more than $40 million in natural gas impact fee revenues to improve local roads, bridges, parks and first-responder services.

“Pennsylvania’s tax on natural gas – the impact fee – continues to directly benefit community programs, environmental initiatives, public safety improvements and road upgrades in all sixty-seven counties, with substantial revenues staying right here in Butler County,” Marcellus Shale Coalition President David Spigelmyersaid. “This is a sensible policy that works. Governor Wolf’s proposal to triple-tax Pennsylvania energy will hurt our ability to compete for investment, cost jobs, and harm consumers through higher energy costs.”

Impact tax revenues in Butler County have funded several community projects, such as the Todd Nature Reserve, Evans City Community Swimming Pool, and the Dwelling Place Community Park. The county commissioners have also established a unique infrastructure bank, which helps extend the impact fee revenue reach by increasing available funding for local infrastructure projects.

“In taking the annual impact fee revenues and establishing an infrastructure bank program, Butler County has created a win-win situation that provides the tools and resources our municipalities need to invest in critical infrastructure improvements,” said Chairman of the Butler County Board of Commissioners Leslie Osche. “The natural gas impact fee is working for Pennsylvania and has made a significant difference in our collective efforts to improve local infrastructure.”

Pennsylvania’s impact fee has generated nearly $1.7 billion in tax revenues since 2012. In 2018 alone, the impact fee brought in $252 million, which was distributed to each of the 67 counties across the Commonwealth.

“Butler County is a great example of how impact fee revenues generate a direct positive benefit for families and communities,” said Senator Scott Hutchinson. “Without these proceeds, critical infrastructure projects would be costly for taxpayers and take years to undertake. Governor Wolf’s Restore Pennsylvania proposal is unnecessary as Pennsylvania has a tax on natural gas that’s directly helping every single community across the Commonwealth.”

Pennsylvania has maintained its position as the second largest natural gas producer in the United States and Butler County is the state’s eighth largest producing county. Increased production of our region’s natural gas has created thousands of jobs across the Commonwealth, delivered home energy savings for consumers, and provided a clean energy source to better the environment.

“The 33 townships in Butler County have put impact fee revenues to good use, relying on the funds to chip, pave, resurface and widen roads,” Chuck Stowe, Allegheny Township supervisor said. “Others have replaced bridges and implemented storm water improvement projects to help manage flooding concerns. These revenues continue to be a blessing as townships and municipalities can complete this work at little or no cost to the local taxpayer.”

For more information on the existing natural gas impact tax and proposed severance tax, visit MarcellusCoalition.org.

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Founded in 2008, the Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC) works with exploration and production, midstream and supply chain partners in the Appalachian Basin and across the country to address issues regarding the production, transportation and use of clean, job-creating, American natural gas from the Marcellus and Utica Shale plays.