What: All Issues : Fair Taxation : Corporate Tax Breaks, Oil & Gas Industry : H.R. 6. Energy/Vote on Amendment to Strike Provision of Energy Bill Halting Collection of Royalty Fees from Oil and Gas Companies Operating in Deep Waters of Gulf of Mexico.
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H.R. 6. Energy/Vote on Amendment to Strike Provision of Energy Bill Halting Collection of Royalty Fees from Oil and Gas Companies Operating in Deep Waters of Gulf of Mexico.
house Roll Call 128     Apr 21, 2005
Y = Conservative
N = Progressive
Winning Side:
Conservative

In this vote, the House defeated an amendment offered by Ra??l Grijalva (D-AZ) to H.R. 6, The Energy Policy Act of 2005, that would have stricken from the bill a provision directing the Secretary of the Interior to stop collecting royalty fees for the government from oil and gas companies operating in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Calling the provision a giveaway to gas and oil companies, Progressives and other amendment supporters cited a recent statement by President Bush to support their argument that the provision in H.R. 6 was unnecessary: "With oil at more than $50 a barrel, by the way, energy companies do not need taxpayer-funded incentives to explore for oil and gas." (Nick Rahall (D-WV) et al., citing President George W. Bush, in the Washington Post, April 21, 2005.) George Miller (D-CA) called the provision "a handout to the most profitable companies in the United States." Republicans countered that the provision in the bill was not a giveaway, noting that when royalty payments had been suspended in the past, more oil companies drilled in deep waters and produced more revenues than would otherwise have been the case. One representative stated: "[t]he language as written is common-sense language that encourages production and allows large investments. We are talking about investments of hundreds of millions of dollars, maybe a billion. We are talking about drilling in deep water where there is great risk. This relief provision allows these companies to get the access to capital they need to take these risks." (Bobby Jindal (R-LA).) Progressives lost this vote when the House defeated the amendment 203 to 227, with 27 Democrats-primarily from oil-producing states-crossed party lines to vote with the Republicans. 29 Republicans voted with Democrats against the amendment. Thus, the provision stating that oil and gas companies operating in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico would not have to pay royalties to the government remained in the bill.

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