Contact: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Anne Blankenship November 26, 2018
WV Oil, Natural Gas Severance Tax Payments Increase by Millions
More than $15 million distributed to counties
Charleston, WV– Natural gas is having a tremendous impact on the State budget and in local economies throughout West Virginia.
The West Virginia oil and natural gas industry paid more than $138 million in severance taxes in fiscal year 2018, an increase of 4.3 percent or more than $5 million over 2017 receipts, according to a review of information provided by West Virginia Department of Tax and Revenue and the State Treasurer’s Office (STO).
Of that $138 million, more than $15 million in severance tax payments will be made to counties and cities, according to the STO. This represents a 61 percent increase year-over-year, and all counties will receive increased disbursements – and in some cases substantial increases.
“The increase in severance tax receipts has contributed greatly to the State’s current budget surplus while providing needed revenue to county and city governments,” said Anne Blankenship, executive director of the West Virginia Oil & Natural Gas Association. “The local funds are used to support vital public services – everything from local emergency responders, community projects and social programs”.
Blankenship noted that six counties received more than $1 million in payments from the fund. They are: Doddridge County ($2,834,771); Wetzel County ($1,456,511); Ritchie County ($1,382,162); Tyler County ($1,345,274); Marshall County ($1,336,783); and, Harrison County ($1,064,866).
In terms of year-over-year percentage increase, Tyler and Ritchie saw gains of 103 percent and 80 percent, respectively. Monongalia County, which will receive $551,832, experienced an increase of 217 percent, the largest gain of any county in the state.
Other counties receiving significant severance distributions include, Ohio ($644,109), Kanawha ($503,976.94), Marion ($358,274.67), Brooke ($309,042) and Taylor ($260,134).
Severance to cities is based on population, so Charleston ($107,965), Huntington ($94,972), Parkersburg ($66,149), Morgantown ($62,300) and Wheeling ($59,255) received the largest portion of those revenues.
Ninety percent (90%) of the natural gas severance taxes collected are allocated to the State. The remaining ten percent is distributed two ways – 75 percent is dispersed to gas-producing counties, and the other 25 percent is distributed to all counties and municipalities. To view the list of county/municipality severance tax distributions, as outlined by the STO, click here.
“When you consider that property tax revenues on natural gas operations generated more than $88 million in 2018 for gas producing counties, you can see the tremendous impact the industry is having on all state and local budgets,” Blankenship said.
For additional information, contact Anne Blankenship at (304) 343-1609.
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