Long-time resident and local businessman Bill Corbus speaks to the Juneau Chamber of Commerce during their weekly luncheon in May 2017. Corbus will speak to the chamber about taxing the oil industry. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Long-time resident and local businessman Bill Corbus speaks to the Juneau Chamber of Commerce during their weekly luncheon in May 2017. Corbus will speak to the chamber about taxing the oil industry. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Empire Live: Chamber turns attention to taxing oil industry

Facts and figures related to oil tax reform.

Summary: That presentation wrapped up quickly. Bill Corbus maintained the proposed Fair Share Act would perhaps be a short-term answer to budget woes, but it would drive investment away from the state in the long run.

12:45 p.m.

Multiple questions from the audience have been statements in favor of maintaining or lowering the current tax rate.

12:40 p.m.

Ben Brown asked Corbus if there is some sort of tax change that could be made by the Legislature that would preempt the Fair Share ballot initiative and improve revenue but leave the tax rate “competitive.”

“As far as what the Legislature should do to balance the budget, that’s above my pay grade,” Corbus said. “Somebody else can figure that out.”

12:37 p.m.

Corbus said less cash flow could lead to reductions to that planned investment.

“We in Juneau maybe miss the fact of the employment that the oil fields provide,” Corbus said. “High-paying jobs and lots of ‘em.”

He shared projections for North Slope production that show 500,000 barrels of oil per day for a year for the next several years.

“I believe that the Fair Share proposal creates a barrier for maintaining current production and major new oil developments,” Corbus said.

He said under the act, the government take will increase from 62% to 76%.

“In the long run, I think we’re looking at lower production, so that’s something to keep in mind,” Corbus said. “A competitive share or a competitive tax rate with higher production is preferable to this so-called ‘Fair Share’ tax rate with lower production.”

“My message is: Alaska, don’t go there,” Corbus said.

I’ve reached out to Vote Yes for Alaska Fair Share Act, a group advocating for the initative. I have not yet heard back.

12:30 p.m.

Corbus said in the future, oil companies will certainly weigh “government take” when deciding where to invest.

“They’re planning on investing $11 billion in the next 10 years on the three legacy fields, and then they’re also planning on $13 billion for new fields,” Corbus said.

12:20 p.m.

“There’s other revenues from the oil industry other than just taxes,” Corbus said.

That includes royalties, which Corbus said account for about 55% of unrestricted oil revenues.

12:15 p.m.

Corbus said his talk will focus on the Fair Share Initiative.

That’s a campaign to remove oil tax credits.

[Read about it here]

“My premise is that this initiative is not good for Alaska,” Corbus said.

He said it may solve a short-term revenue problem, but it would do long-term damage.

12:10 p.m.

In light of the legislative session’s start and Alcoholic Beverage and Marijuana control board meetings and today’s speaker, this is an especially well-attended meeting. There’s probably about 50 people here.

12:05 p.m.

The Greater Juneau Chamber of Commerce is meeting at Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall today, and Bill Corbus is scheduled to speak about taxing the oil industry.

Oil tax credits continue to be a hot topic among lawmakers with some seeing them as necessary to attract investment and others seeing the industry as a potential revenue source for a state that was recently mired in budget debates.

[Opinion: Eliminate Alaska’s oil tax credits]

More in News

Jasmine Chavez, a crew member aboard the Quantum of the Seas cruise ship, waves to her family during a cell phone conversation after disembarking from the ship at Marine Park on May 10. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Ships in port for the week of May 18

Here’s what to expect this week.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Friday, May 17, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Thursday, May 16, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Students and staff play a kickball game on the field between the Marie Drake Building and Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé on Friday afternoon. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
School district leaders debate biggest needs for extra $5.2M approved by Legislature, in hope governor won’t veto it

Staff for special education and gifted students, homeschooling, paying off city loan high on list.

Rep. Andi Story, D-Juneau, speaks Wednesday, May 8, on the floor of the Alaska House of Representatives. (James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)
After several deadly drownings, Alaska Legislature votes to require harbor safety ladders

Bill by Rep. Andi Story, D-Juneau, passes on final day of session.

Members of the Thunder Mountain High School culinary arts team prepare their three-course meal during the National ProStart Invitational in Baltimore on April 26-28. (Photo by Rebecca Giedosh-Ruge)
TMHS culinary arts team serves a meal of kings at national competition

Five students who won state competition bring Alaskan crab and salmon to “Top Chef”-style event.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Wednesday, May 15, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Sen. Lyman Hoffman, D-Bethel, listens to discussion on the Senate floor on Wednesday. (James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)
A look at some of the bills that failed to pass the Alaska Legislature this year

Parts of a long-term plan to bring state revenue and expenses into line again failed to advance.

Most Read