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Oil Severance Tax Proposed; Would Fund Calif. Parks, Higher Ed

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(Sacramento, CA)
Tuesday, February 12, 2013

State Senator Noreen Evans says an oil severance tax is long overdue.

Evans: "The state of California is the only oil-producing state in the nation that does not have this tax.  California is way behind the eight-ball on this."

Evans says the state's higher education and parks systems have each endured deep budget cuts and have great need for the measure's projected $2 billion a year in revenue.

Republican Senator Jean Fuller says this is not the time for a new tax on a specific industry after voters approved Proposition 30 last fall.

Fuller: "We've been given a reprieve by the taxpayers with these new taxes.  Let's use them efficiently and wisely - and maybe tighten our belt just a little bit for the moment."

As a tax measure, the bill would need two-thirds votes in both chambers and Governor Jerry Brown's signature.  Brown and some moderate Democratic lawmakers have said they're reluctant to raise more taxes right now.

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