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Dean Heller On Tax Breaks For Oil Companies

Heller Voted To Keep Oil And Gas Subsidies While Not Voting To Renew Renewable Energy Loan Guarantee Program. Heller voted to keep billions in tax breaks for oil and gas while voting against the renewable energy loan guarantee program that funded projects such as the Crescent Dunes plant in Tonopah, NV. Ian Rogoff, the executive chairman of Heliopower, an integrated energy develop company, commented that the federal government favored oil and gas companies over renewable energy, “Oil and gas tax benefits have been renewed, which means government support for those industries has been renewed … for the most part, these incentives [such as loan guarantees] are just in place to allow these new technologies and new industries to compete effectively, and compete against incumbents.” [Las Vegas Sun, 5/25/11; Las Vegas Review-Journal, 6/25/11, Las Vegas Sun, 5/20/11]

Heller Voted to Protect Oil Company Tax Breaks Over Middle Class. In 2008, Heller voted to kill a one-year adjustment for the Alternative Minimum Tax with instructions that it be reported back promptly with language that would eliminate tax increases providing offsets in the bill, and provide that deductions in mileage rates for vehicles used for charitable purposes are treated the same as medical travel and moving rates. Democrats put revenue-raising offsets into the bill, arguing that the $62 billion in revenue that would be lost through the patch must be made up. The revenue increases targeted private-equity managers, the oil and gas industry, certain foreign-owned corporations and merchants who underreport their income. Republicans contended that offsets were unnecessary because the patch would simply maintain the tax status quo. They also said a temporary tax reprieve should not require permanent revenue increases and argued that the budget deficit should be closed by spending cuts, not revenue increases. Rep. McCrery, the ranking member of the Ways and Means Committee, offered the motion to recommit that would have removed the offsets and increased the tax deduction for miles driven for charitable purposes. McCrery warned about the proposal’s economic effects, saying “that change in our tax code would discourage, at the margin, that capital from coming to this country, being invested in this country and creating jobs in this country,” he said. The motion failed, 199-222. [Vote #454, 6/25/2008; CQ Today, 6/25/08]

Heller Voted to Protect Oil Companies over Renewable Energies. In 2008, Heller voted against the Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act. The legislation comprehensively invested resources into wind, solar, and geothermal energy systems. Furthermore, it extended tax credits to producers of cleaner burning bio-diesel and cellulosic alcohol based fuels. The legislation also eliminated a manufacturing tax deduction for larger oil and gas companies. The bill passed, 236-182. [Vote #84, 2/27/2008; Release, Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, 2/27/08]

Heller Voted to Protect Tax Breaks for Oil Companies. In 2008, Heller voted in favor of a motion to recommit the Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act and strike the provision that eliminated a manufacturing tax deduction for larger oil and gas companies. Without the proposed amendments, the bill comprehensively invested resources into wind, solar, and geothermal energy systems. Furthermore, it extended tax credits to producers of cleaner burning bio-diesel and cellulosic alcohol based fuels. The legislation also eliminated some tax benefits for energy-producing companies, which were the provisions that the amendment intended to strike. The motion failed, 197-222. [Vote #83, 2/27/2008; Release, Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, 2/27/08]

Heller Voted to Protect Tax Breaks for Oil Companies. In 2008, Heller voted against a motion to provide for House floor consideration of the Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act and allow for the House to vote on the legislation. The bill comprehensively invested resources into wind, solar, and geothermal energy systems. Furthermore, it extended tax credits to producers of cleaner burning bio-diesel and cellulosic alcohol based fuels. The legislation also eliminated a manufacturing tax deduction for larger oil and gas companies. The motion passed, 220-188. [Vote #81, 2/27/2008; Release, Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, 2/27/08]

Heller Voted to Protect Tax Breaks for Oil Companies. In 2008, Heller voted against a motion to end debate on the Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act and allow for the House to vote on the legislation. The bill comprehensively invested resources into wind, solar, and geothermal energy systems. Furthermore, it extended tax credits to producers of cleaner burning bio-diesel and cellulosic alcohol based fuels. The legislation also eliminated a manufacturing tax deduction for larger oil and gas companies. The motion passed, 214-189. [Vote #80, 2/27/2008; Release, Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, 2/27/08]

Heller Voted to Protect Tax Breaks for Oil Companies. In 2008, Heller voted against considering the rule to allow the House to vote on the Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act and allow for the House to vote on the legislation. The bill comprehensively invested resources into wind, solar, and geothermal energy systems. Furthermore, it extended tax credits to producers of cleaner burning bio-diesel and cellulosic alcohol based fuels. The legislation also eliminated a manufacturing tax deduction for larger oil and gas companies. The motion passed, 224-186. [Vote #78, 2/27/2008; Release, Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, 2/27/08]

Heller Voted Against Energy Bill That Would Eliminate or Reduce Tax Breaks for Major Oil Companies. In 2007, Heller voted against comprehensive energy legislation that would raise automobile fuel-efficiency standards for the first time in 32 years and require increased use of renewable energy sources to generate electricity. Democrats characterized the legislation as “a new direction” in U.S. energy policy away from dependence on fossil fuels. The bill would boost corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards by 40 percent, to an industry average of 35 miles per gallon by 2020, the first such action since 1975, when Congress first enacted the federal auto fuel economy requirements. The bill would expand the use of ethanol sevenfold to 36 billion gallons a year by 2022 with 21 billion gallons coming from cellulosic feedstock such as wood chips and prairie grass. The bill would require electric utilities to produce at least 15 percent of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2020 and direct the Energy Department to set new energy efficiency standards for appliances and building construction. It also would eliminate or reduce $13 billion in subsidies and tax breaks for the five major oil and gas companies to be used for tax incentives for development of renewable energy sources like ethanol from grasses and wood chips and biodiesel and for energy efficiency programs and conservation. The motion was agreed to 235-181 [Vote #1140, 12/6/2007; Congressional Quarterly; AP, 12/06/07]

Heller Voted Against Ending Tax Breaks for Oil Companies. On January 18, 2007, Heller voted against the bill that would limit tax benefits and require royalty payments from certain oil and gas companies. According to the Washington Post, the bill “would roll back billions of dollars worth of oil drilling incentives, raise billions more by boosting federal royalties paid by oil and gas companies for offshore production, and plow the money into new tax breaks for renewable energy sources.” [Roll Call 40, H 6, 01/18/2007; Washington Post 01/04/2007]