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Oil tax vote too close to call

Posted: August 19, 2014 - 9:21pm

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska's revised oil tax system may have a short lifespan, but as of Tuesday night, the matter was too close to call.

Votes in favor of Ballot Measure 1, which would repeal a production tax approved by lawmakers in 2013, were leading by a narrow margin.

Republican lawmakers approved the revised tax system at the urging of Gov. Sean Parnell.

Senate Bill 21 narrowly passed the state Senate with the promise that it would attract investment for new wells and put more oil in the trans-Alaska pipeline.

Critics called the measure a giveaway. The law granted deep tax cuts but extracted no commitment by oil producers to invest.

If the 2013 tax system is repealed, the state reverts to a system championed by Parnell's predecessor, Sarah Palin.

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