September 8, 2015

CONTACT: Travis Smith (907) 258-3077

AK Legislative working group starts discussion

ANCHORAGE: Earlier today, members of the Alaska legislature, Commissioner of Revenue Hoffbeck, Department of Revenue Tax Division Director Ken Alper, and industry stakeholders held a roundtable discussion on Alaska’s oil and gas production tax credits.

Throughout the legislative session, lawmakers had many opportunities to have a legitimate conversation around the state’s oil production tax credits. Back in April, theADN reported that Alaska’s oil production tax revenues were at the lowest point since the beginning of the pipeline. 

The Republican Majorities have stifled much of the debate over oil and gas production tax credits. The discussion over the state’s tax credit policy nearly reached a boiling point late in the session when Pete Kelly called the discussion over credits “disingenuous.”

Members of the Senate Democrats and the House Independent-Democratic Coalition championed oil production tax credit reform as a potential major cost saver during these hard fiscal times. Members of the minority even offered “emergency” legislation to help Alaska save money and address Alaska’s flawed production tax system.

However, during the legislative session, the Majority was “uninterested” in discussing reform of the oil production tax credits.

Back in 2013, close ties between Majority members and the oil industry raised eyebrows. Sen. Micciche and Sen. Meyer are ConocoPhillips employees.

During today’s roundtable discussion, Sen. Micciche defended tax credits used in Cook Inlet; his employer ConcoPhillips is a producer in Cook Inlet.

“Holding a September round table discussion on Alaska’s oil production tax credits is a good step,” said Kay Brown, Executive Director of the Alaska Democratic Party. “On January 19th 2016, Alaskans will find out whether lawmakers are truly serious about oil production tax credit reform, and for our sake, I hope they are.”