As consumers struggled to cope with rising prices at the pump, the oil industry pulled in a record $101 billion in profits last year — about $11.6 million an hour — and according to Barb Flye of the Washington Tax Fairness Coalition, taxpayers are picking up the tab… twice.
“Individuals have to dig deeper to fill the gas tank and heat their homes, and collectively, all taxpayers will be covering the higher gas and heating costs for a host of publicly-funded services and institutions,” Flye said. “We’re paying more for heat at public schools and colleges, hospitals and nursing homes, courts and other government buildings, not to mention the higher cost of running school buses and public transit.”
This has prompted state Rep. Steve Conway to introduce HB 2128 a tax hike on excess oil industry profits. The bill would put a 3% B&O tax surcharge on gross receipts of companies with a refining capacity in excess of 10,000 barrels a year, whenever retail gas prices exceed $1.75 a gallon. The Washington Tax Fairness Coalition will be holding a press event at noon today in Olympia, in support of HB 2128.