Obama's tax measure angers energy industry

April 11, 2013 at 8:31 AM
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WASHINGTON, April 11 (UPI) -- A U.S. federal budget for 2014 suggests the White House is out of step with domestic oil and natural gas developments, the energy industry said.

President Barack Obama revealed his 2014 budget that will "continue our march towards energy independence and address the threat of climate change."

U.S. oil and natural gas production is leading the world in terms of gains outside of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. Critics of Obama's energy policies say much of that gain is from policy decisions made by the previous administration.

Obama's budget plan called for the elimination of a tax break that would allow oil, natural gas and coal companies to deduct 6 percent of their qualifying income.

"Corporate profits are at an all-time high," he said. "But we have to get wages and incomes rising, as well."

Independent Petroleum Association of America Chairwoman Virginia Lazenby said the tax measure reveals a "fundamental misunderstanding" about the way the oil and gas industry is treated. The oil and gas industry won't be able to support job growth if it has to pay more taxes, she said.

Associate Director for the Natural Resources Defense Council Franz Matzner hailed the budget measure for getting rid of "billions of dollars in taxpayer handouts to the dirty energy industry of the past, which it doesn't need, and harms our health and planet."

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