Our energy reporter, Jay F. Marks, has an insightful article today detailing why local energy officials are worried about the effect President Obama’s proposed federal budget may have on their industry and our state’s economy, which has taken a big hit recently from low natural gas prices. Marks reports that the energy industry is particularly concerned with Obama’s proposal to eliminate fossil fuel subsidies:
Administration officials estimate the loss of those subsidies could cost the oil and gas industry as much as $40 billion over the next decade. Other parts of the president’s budget plan could harm the industry as well.
That loss could be especially noticeable in Oklahoma, Oklahoma City University economist Steve Agee said, because the state is so reliant to tax income generated by the oil and gas industry.
The industry accounts for nearly $14 billion in payroll and 98,000 jobs in Oklahoma, according to 2007 study by accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers.
That equals about 5 percent of the state’s labor force.