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Corbett Administration Downsizes Ethane Cracker Job Claims

Scott Detrow / StateImpact Pennsylvania

Governor Corbett packed more than 30 people onto the stage to show support for the tax break during a press conference last week

The Tribune-Review points out members of the Corbett Administration have downsized their projected jobs claims for an ethane cracker in Beaver County.

Members of Gov. Tom Corbett’s staff cited job projections on Tuesday that were half what they touted this month while promoting a proposed petrochemical plant in Beaver County and related tax breaks.

Royal Dutch Shell plc might build an ethane processing, or cracker, complex in Beaver County, a project that could require 10,000 permanent jobs in the state, according to a news release sent out after three Corbett Cabinet members led an event in Philadelphia touting the project and the governor’s proposed $1.65 billion tax credit.

The administration’s news release after a similar event June 14 in Beaver County touted “up to 20,000” jobs, a figure critics said could be inflated to help win over lawmakers and the public.

As StateImpact Pennsylvania has reported, Corbett’s jobs claims are based on an industry-produced report, not an independent study.

The American Chemistry Council predicts more than 17,000 jobs would be created if Shell kick-starts a corridor of chemical processing plants in Beaver County, though the bulk of that figure comes from “indirect” and “induced” positions.

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