Congresswoman Stacey E. Plaskett released the following statement today regarding the introduction of H.R. 4198 – a bill dealing gasoline tax revenues in the Virgin Islands:
“Late last month I introduced H.R. 4198 which is a bill that that amends the Internal Revenue Code regarding gasoline taxes in the Virgin Islands. Gasoline tax revenue collected by the U.S. that is originally sourced in the U.S. Virgin Islands would be transferred back to the territory’s treasury under my bill.
“With oil refining set to come online early next year at Limetree Bay it is important that we start thinking about securing the tens of millions of dollars in annual revenue by collecting a portion of the gasoline tax remitted to the federal government from refined oil exports produced in the Virgin Islands to the United States.
“I applaud the Virgin Islands Legislature for passing Bill No. 33-0052 — which was approved in the Committee on Finance. This Legislatures bill would is a resolution to petition the governor of the Virgin Islands and myself to join the Legislature in pursuing the return of a portion of the gasoline excise tax collected by the Federal government. My bill here in Congress does just that. If the federal government were to remit 50 percent of the amount collected, the Government of the Virgin Islands could receive in a low estimate scenario (at 45,000 barrels per day), $67 million annually, or $79 million in a scenario where output is high. Oil exports at Limetree Bay are expected to range from 45,000 to 53,000 barrels per day. Each barrel holds 45 gallons, the estimated amount of Federal excise tax revenue at 18.3 cents per barrel would range from $370,575 to $436,455 per day.
“I look forward to working with the Governor and the Legislature to make sure the Virgin Islands collects the amount due to the territory from the U.S. Treasury in regards to taxes collected on our gasoline sourced in the Virgin Islands.”