Office of Mineral Resources

State Mineral and Energy Board Committees

Seal of the State Mineral BoardTract and Nomination Committee

Tract and Nomination Committee members work closely with staff from the Leasing Section of the Petroleum Lands Division to evaluate nominations for state mineral leasing.

Each month committee members receive a Tract Evaluation Report and a map from Leasing Section personnel as to the number, category and location of nominations received by the staff for future state lease sale. The Committee determines and recommends to the composite State Mineral and Energy Board whether or not to advertise such tracts for mineral lease and, after advertisement, reviews any letters of protest received as to the offering of the advertised tracts for mineral lease. Committee members consider any proposed tract withdrawal recommendations by the staff, as well as any other business concerning tracts nominated for mineral leasing.

Lease Review Committee

Lease Review Committee members work closely with staff from the Tract Evaluation and Lease Development Section and Lease Maintenance Section of the Geological and Engineering Division. They review oil and gas activity on state mineral leases to ensure that lessees are prudently developing and producing them and are in full compliance with their terms and conditions.

The staff monitors oil and gas activity on state mineral leases daily. District geologists, operating pursuant to State Mineral and Energy Board guidelines, work with lease maintenance personnel in reviewing every state mineral lease at least once a year; analyzing lease production, lease operations, operator plans of development, local geology and surrounding oil and gas activity.

Each month Committee members receive a Fact Finding Booklet from staff containing a plat, lease data and correspondence from lessees for each lease reviewed, along with staff recommendations. The Committee considers the information and then makes its own recommendations to the composite Board as to whether the operators of the leases should further develop the leases, appear before the Committee, receive additional time to develop, or release acreage back to the State instead of development.

Audit Committee

Audit Committee members work closely with staff from the Mineral Income Division, especially the Audit Director, to ensure timely and accurate payment of revenue from oil and gas leasing activities and production.

Staff members closely monitor mineral income to the State utilizing computerized records, prepare and transmit invoices for late royalty payment interest and penalties, and perform audits and transmit billing letters as necessary. Division personnel inform and make recommendations to Committee members and the composite State Mineral and Energy Board as to lessee requests for payment plans, penalty waivers and recoupments, as well as placing lessees on demand for royalty nonpayment or underpayment. The Committee and the Board review the information and decide on a course of action.

Legal and Title Controversy Committee

Legal and Title Controversy Committee members work closely with the Petroleum Lands Director of the Petroleum Lands Division to investigate, review and present recommendations on legal issues concerning title to state mineral acreage, mineral lease maintenance and operations.

The Petroleum Lands Director, with staff support, compiles and transmits information and recommendations on a monthly basis to Committee members on legal matters as varied as lease amendments, late assignment penalties, force majeure notice, late release penalties, operation agreement formation and amendments, consent letters, escrowing funds pending unit formation, certain geophysical permit matters, title disputes and royalty disputes giving rise to legal proceedings, pending litigation, and compromise/settlement offers and agreements. Other OMR staff members provide input and recommendations as needed and after review, the Committee presents them to the Board for resolution by agreement or by instituting suit.

The Attorney General and the General Counsel of the Department of Natural Resources advise the State Mineral and Energy Board, as well as private counsel retained by the Board as needed. When the Board is named as a party in a lawsuit, authority to compromise or settle the lawsuit is secured from the Board.

Docket Review Committee

Docket Review Committee members work closely with staff from the Docket Section of the Petroleum Lands Division, as well as the Petroleum Lands Director, to review items submitted for State Mineral and Energy Board consideration.

Docket Section personnel receive a multitude of items for Board consideration at its monthly meetings including, but not limited to: unitization agreements, amendments of unitization agreements, lease amendments, compromise and settlement agreements, consent letters, operating agreements, amendments of operating agreements, designations of participating areas, acts of correction of state leases, deferred gas production agreements, amendments of deferred gas production agreement, reinstatements and amendments of unitization agreements, confirmations and re-establishments of unitization agreements, unit production sharing agreements, pooling and unitization agreements, requests for approval of state agency mineral leases, and transfers of interest (assignments).

Other OMR staff members, in addition to Docket Section personnel, provide evaluation and recommendations as needed and the monthly docket is finalized for presentation by the Petroleum Lands Director to the Committee members and composite Board for action.