WV State, County Officials Fight Court Ruling That Could Mean Millions in Lost Tax Revenue

CLARKSBURG — Lawmakers and state, county and board of education officials are closely watching a state Supreme Court case that will determine if the West Virginia Tax Department must change the way it values oil production expenses on natural gas wells.

Antero Resources appealed the valuations to county commissions in several oil-producing counties. Each of those counties, including Harrison and Doddridge, upheld the state tax ruling, according to Harrison County Administrator Willie Parker.

“There is a cap on expenses per well, $175,000, and that’s one thing Antero and other companies were challenging. They appealed the Doddridge County cases to the business court out of Martinsburg,” Parker said. “That court decided in favor of the natural gas company.” Kevin Ellis and Al Schopp of Antero Resources said they could only speak generally about the ongoing case.

“Since this is still an active and pending case, we are not comfortable talking about the merits of the case. We disagreed with the mathematical equation they were using and how they were applying it. It is unfortunate the process takes this long. We’re hopefully coming to the end of the process, then everyone will move forward,” Schopp said.

Ellis added that all taxes assessed have been paid. “We’re just making sure the methodology is appropriate going forward,” Ellis said.

Read full article by Darlene Swiger here