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Letter: Some questions need answers before reducing taxes on oil

Are the opponents of the proposed reduction in taxation on the oil industry, with their repeated “giveaway” rhetoric, helping Alaska resolve a serious issue? Might describing the proposal as  “changing the rules so that the oil companies pay less oil company money per barrel of oil to Alaska” be a more reasonable description of the proposal?

We can resolve the impasse between the potential long term positive results versus the potential short term adverse results by answering key questions concerning: the tax rate reduction needed in order to make Alaska highly competitive on the world oil development market; the corresponding expected operating and capital budget changes;  the number of years it might take for various quantities of new oil to reach the pipeline; and the corresponding expected tax dollar amounts at various barrel-of-oil prices.

Financial and petroleum technology experts in state government, academia and private business could and should be providing all Alaska residents with the answers to these questions.  

— Jim Lieb

Palmer