The Joint Committee on Taxation released its report this week summarizing the 11 Ways and Means working groups’ review of the federal tax code. Like the working groups themselves, the report does not make any recommendations to the full Ways and Means Committee on how they should implement tax reform. The report also includes a summary of the comments received by outside groups. The report notes that percentage depletion and other tax expenditures benefiting oil and gas extraction and production were singled out by some groups, but it also registers support for these provisions thanks to the hard work of NSWA members. Our comments will be important placeholders as the tax reform effort continues.
Meanwhile, the Administration is experiencing pressure and has even come under fire from a number of environmental organizations and members of Congress for their perceived shifting friendliness towards the oil and natural gas industry. Some members are unhappy that a proposed rule to regulate fracking on public lands is being ‘watered down’ by industry. At the same time, rumors are starting to swirl that the Administration might be poised to approve the Keystone XL pipeline, along with a number of LNG terminals for natural gas export.