Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to … write about state revenue.
So we won’t let ourselves get off Walter Scott-free for an editorial in The Oklahoman this week that discussed a big drop in gross production tax revenue during August and the need for the administration to get busy building more liquefied natural gas export facilities.
We noted that gross production taxes totaled just $154,000, compared with $36.1 million in August 2011. That prompted one reader to call and point out that his energy company alone wrote a tax check larger than $154,000 last month.
We should have spelled out, as the state finance director did in the report we used as the basis of the editorial, that natural gas generated about $14 million in gross production tax revenue, but most of that was eaten up by “refunds and other required distributions.”
August was a down month for the state’s energy sector, yes. But cataclysmic? No.