House Okays Extension of 50-Cents-Per-Gallon Naural Gas Tax CreditBy John O'Dell December 14, 2009
In a move designed to show continued support for development and use of natural gas as a transportation fuel, the House late last week voted to continue subsidizing liquid and compressed natural gas fuels at least through the end of until the end of 2010.
Retailers of natural gas transportation fuel receive a tax credit of 50-cents-per-gasoline gallon equivalent - a sum passed on to consumers at nonprofit fuel stations such as those operated by utilities and municipal governments, and often kept for reinvestment by profit-makers such as Clean Energy Fuels.
Natural gas at commercial stations typically is at least 50 cents a gallon cheaper than unleaded regular gasoline and the price difference - helped by the tax credit - can be considerably greater.
The extension bill now goes to the Senate, where questions have been raised about paying for this and other tax credit extensions the House has approved.
The natural gas credit has been allowed since 1996.
Congress also is considering a measure, H.R. 1835, that would increase the federal tax credits for purchasing natural gas-fueled vehicles and building natural gas fueling stations ad create a new subsidy to encourage automakers to build natural gas-powered vehicles.