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What does tripling Alaska's gasoline tax mean for the state budget and the economy?

Hoffbeck: It just makes us average


Turn back the clock to 1953. President Barack Obama will invoke a provision in a 1953 law that gives him wide latitude to withdraw U.S. waters from future oil and gas leasing, said the people who spoke on condition of anonymity because the decision had not been announced. Until now the law has been used sparingly to permanently preserve coral reefs, walrus feeding grounds and marine sanctuaries. The move could indefinitely restrict oil production there, according to two people familiar with the decision.


According to the Alaska Dispatch News using the so-called 12(a) provision to keep drilling out of big chunks of the nation's territorial oceans is sure to draw a legal challenge, and there is scant legal precedent on the matter. President-elect Trump may rescind Obama's order, but the statute doesn't include a provision for reversal and that action may take years to work its way through court. "Congress didn't give the president that power to undo a withdrawal," said Niel Lawrence, Alaska director of the Natural Resources Defense Council. "Trump may claim it. And it may even get upheld." 


Headlamp anxiously awaits President-elect Trump's pro-resource development agenda when he is sworn in next month.


Just average. As a part of Governor Walker's budget plan, Alaska's gasoline taxes could triple. Walker's fuel tax proposal calls for increasing the gasoline tax from 8 cents per gallon to 16 cents per gallon on July 1, 2017. On July 1, 2018, the tax would rise to 24 cents per gallon. "We don't feel like it makes us uncompetitive or is an onerous tax; it just makes us average," said Alaska Department of Revenue Commissioner Randall Hoffbeck by phone Friday.


Positing on how the industry will fare in 2017, Wood Mackenzie expert Tom Ellacott said the year "will be a year of stability and opportunity for oil and gas companies in positions of financial strength. More players will look at opportunities to adapt and grow their portfolios."


First Reads

OPEC deal makes oil investors most bullish since slump began
Alaska Dispatch News, Mark Shenk, December 19, 2016

Obama Said to Use 1953 Law to Block Drilling in Arctic, Atlantic
Bloomberg, Jennifer Dlouhy, December 19, 2016

Alaska Gasoline Prices Increase Almost 3 Cents Per Gallon
TVTV, Brandon Smith, December 19, 2016

The Right Way to Do Infrastructure Spending
Patriot Post, Stephen Moore, December 20, 2016

How will the oil and gas industry do in 2017?
Fuel Fix, David Hunn, December 19, 2016

Walker proposes tripling gasoline tax to take a bite out of Alaska budget deficit
Alaska Dispatch News, James Brooks, December 19, 2016

AK Headlamp
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