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Citizen effort to raise taxes on North Dakota oil fizzles

February 20, 2018

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — A citizen-led effort to rework North Dakota’s oil tax structure has fizzled.

Former Democratic Rep. Ed Gruchalla of Fargo says the idea to reverse legislation that lowered oil taxes for drillers “just couldn’t get any traction.” He says backers won’t be pushing to get it on the ballot this year.

The Legislature passed a measure in 2015 that abolishes some price-based incentives in exchange for lowering the overall tax rate from 11.5 percent to 10 percent.

Democrats have called it a giveaway to the oil industry. Republicans say it provides stability and predictability for the industry and the state’s oil tax structure.

North Dakota’s oil industry wanted a flat 9 percent tax rate in exchange for giving up the price triggers.

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