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Summary: HB 2446 would extend a tax credit for clean energy projects that seek to catch carbon dioxide emissions from natural gas to use in oil production. Other fuel producers, such as coal, have access to these credits that amount to $100 million. HB 2446 simply makes natural gas projects eligible for these credits while not increasing the amount of total tax credits available. HB 2446 also amends law so that these industries, including natural gas, cannot claim property tax exemptions under Chapter 313, Tax Code, and receive a franchise tax credit under Chapter 171, tax code, at the same time.
Analysis: We do not support special tax credits targeted to benefit a specific industry to the exclusion of others. HB 2446 is palatable only because it does not expand the amount of funds to be given away in tax credits. HB 2446 simply allows the natural gas industry equal opportunity to these credits that other energy producers currently have access to. We are neutral on HB 2446 because it seeks to address an issue of unequal treatment of natural gas producers under Texas’ tax law.