As the debate over fracking and raising the state severance tax continues, campaign finance reports show oil and gas companies have poured money into Republican legislative campaign coffers over the last few years.
Republican lawmakers killed GOP Governor John Kasich's plan in the state budget that would have raised the severance tax on oil and gas drillers. So far this year, the oil and gas industry has donated more than 242 thousand dollars to GOP state lawmakers and candidates. In the last two-year election cycle, the industry donated 830-thousand dollars to Republican legislative campaign coffers. Ohio House speaker Bill Batchelder, who led the effort to kill the Kasich plan, was the top recipient.