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Tuesday PM February 1st, 2011

BP is selling Texas City refinery…Houston considering 3 million tax rebate as part of stadium deal for Houston Dynamo…


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BP is selling its Texas City refinery. It’s part of a plan by the London-based energy firm to shed half its U.S. refinery business. Company spokesman Scott Dean says the decision is purely a business move.

“We don’t have local logistics or tankage around it. There aren’t any BP-branded service stations or a retail network in Texas. All the products from Texas City are typically barged or most of them are actually shipped via pipeline. So with that in mind, we believe that a different owner with a different strategy and portfolio will really be able to take Texas City to the next level.”

Dean says the refinery sale will not cost any local jobs.

“The intent would be to sell this as a going concern, so there is absolutely no consideration of any kind of shutdown. The refinery’s going to continue to operate safely and produce products for consumers until we find a competent, qualified buyer, and we’re targeting to do that by the end of 2012.”

Fifteen workers died in a 2005 explosion at the Texas City refinery.

BP said a stronger-than-expected end to 2010, in which high oil prices lifted its fourth quarter profit by 30%, was not enough to avoid a full-year loss of $3.7 billion. It raised to $40.9 billion the estimate for the overall cost of last year’s rig accident in the Gulf of Mexico, which killed 11 workers. BP is keeping its chemical complex at Texas City, which is a separate entity.

Houston is considering a tax rebate deal as part of the package for a planned $60 million stadium for the Houston Dynamo. The city council is expected to vote tomorrow on a rebate package meant to return $3 million in projected sales tax to the MLS team. City council members could endorse a final agreement with Harris County over creation of an economic development tax zone for the area.

The Harris County-Houston Sports Authority in December approved an agreement to build the proposed stadium. The venue, scheduled to open in the spring of 2012, would also be the home field for Texas Southern University football games. The Dynamo currently play at Robertson Stadium at the University of Houston.

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Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media's coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments across Greater Houston. Before taking up his current post, Andrew spent five years as Houston Public Media's business reporter, covering the oil...

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