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County Gets Oil, Gas Tax Revenue

By Staff | Nov 19, 2015

Tyler County Commission got an early Christmas present – oil and gas severance tax money.

Commission President Eric Vincent said the county received more than $616,7642 in severance tax revenue a nearly 50 percent increase from the 2013/14 severance tax cycle.

Last year, the county received about $339,654 in oil and gas severance tax revenue, according to the county commission.

Commission Vice President Charles Smith said the funds are not dedicated to any particular budget item, but are instead disbursed into the county’s general fund.

“This will absolutely help the county’s bottom line,” he said.

Commissioner John Stender said the money is needed for badly needed repairs at the courthouse.

“Maybe we can use this additional money to pay for needed repairs at the county courthouse,” he said.

According to the state Treasurer’s office, most of the surrounding counties saw increases in severance tax revenue. Ohio County received $714,206; Marshall County with $1,136 million in revenues; and Wetzel County received $1,899 million.

“Though our severence tax revenues have increased, there are other counties in the area that are a lot better off than we are,” Stender said.

Justin Southern, communications director for state Auditor’s office, said county budgets have been declining for the past three years. He said the grand total of all county budgets within the state was about $661 million for fiscal year 2015 which dropped to about $582 million for fiscal year 2016.

Tyler was one of only seven counties to see a budget increase within the 2016 fiscal year.

However, Tyler County’s general fund budget increased about $110,000 from more than $3.841 million in 2015 fiscal year to $3.947 million for the 2016 fiscal year.

And Tyler County’s budget was one a handful in the state to have a coal severance tax revenue increase.

Coal severance tax revenues was about $33,625 in 2015 for Tyler County – an increase of about $6,500.

“These are the budget projections for the counties which reflect a decrease in coal severance, but at least in Tyler County’s case, there was an increase in severance tax revenues,” Southern said.

For more information about county budgets, see the state Auditor’s website at wvsao.gov/localgovernment /levyestimates.aspx.