WHAT TO DO ABOUT BIG OIL?
In 2013, under the Parnell administration, the State of Alaska passed SB 21, known as the “More Alaskan Production Act”. If you’ve been following the news, we all know that this new tax incentive structure did the opposite. Starting in 2014, the first fiscal year this “Hand Out” bill was in effect, Alaska began the largest recession in the States history, oil production dropped and continues to drop even though our sister states are increasing production, and with that jobs and revenues. Last year alone, the State of Alaska lost 19.4 million (one fifth of State funding required to operate our ferries) in corporate income tax to Big Oil. You read that right. While our budget is in a deficit and our legislature takes from your PFD to pay for it, they’re giving away millions.
It is high time for Alaska to get its fair share again. This next legislative session, we must have a body that is willing to stand up for Alaskans and get our fair share of oil revenues. Giving away hundreds of millions in tax credits, putting our State in a deficit year after year, and then looking to Alaskans of all ages to foot the bill is unfair, unjust, and un-American.
I’ve sat with the lobbyists of Big Oil. I asked what we can do to improve production. Something practical that was fair for all. Their answer? “A friendly fiscal climate”. AKA, don’t raise our taxes and keep handing us the credits.
Big Oil is good at their job, and at the end of the day, this is nothing more than a business negotiation. Big Oil wants to make money, and by God they are going to get the best deal possible. Many of our elected officials have ignored this issue for far too long. It’s time to send people to Juneau who support Alaskans and have the willingness to negotiate a fair deal.
I know that it is difficult to drill. I know that there are issues at a federal level that must be worked through. But it is not our responsibility to foot the bill for it. It’s time to reassess how we tax Big Oil, and stop giving handouts to outside corporations. This will help fix our deficit issues, fund our ferries, avoid an income tax, bring the full PFD back to Alaskans, build the Permanent Fund, and more.
1) Alaska Department of Revenue Spring Forecast 2022