. It had earlier acquired the land and mineral rights from Anadarko Petroleum. Once the board settles on a price, the bill requires it to report to the Legislature with that figure, a description of the assets included in the purchase and where the funding would come from. Gordon has been talking to the company for six months, Gordon said on Monday. The bills authorize the use of various savings accounts to pay for the land, categorizing the purchase as an investment of those funds that would earn the state money. That’s the same entity that’s brokering a prospective deal with Wyoming, according to discussions in the Senate Appropriations Committee on Tuesday. APC’s Rockies holdings is a tiny part of the whole, and is not a major influence on Oxy’s fortunes. . Wyoming news. The legislation allows up to 75% of the purchase price to come from the Legislative Stabilization Reserve Account. Keep it clean, civil and on topic. “The outdoor economy is real and it’s extremely important in efforts to even things out during the continual boom bust cycles of the energy industry. Oxy was concentrated in the Permian basin in TX and was not interested in some of Anadarko’s assets that fall outside the wheelhouse. Will they urge a working-interest partner to take over operator-ship? A map of 1 million acres of surface land (in pink) and 4 million mineral acres (in blue) the state's top officials want to buy from Occidental Petroleum. Leaders of both the House and Senate, as well as the state treasurer and state auditor joined him in the announcement. WyoFile stands behind everything we publish and expects commenters to do the same. I would suggest Wyoming not make a bid for the assets, but rather partner with the ultimate bid winner to then exchange out the “checkerboard” with BLM and perhaps then negotiate to buy the surface acreage where it makes sense (trona, wind farms, power & transmission lines, grazing, etc.) An extra $100.-or so, on a several $1000’s Wyoming trip is insignificant. Gov. This tract of land is commonly referred to as the Union Pacific checkerboard. Allow for an added tourism tax – hotels, camping, etc. Speaker of the House Steve Harshman (R-Casper) indicated discussions had taken place for longer. In return for building a rail line across Wyoming, the government, starting in 1862, gave the rail company every other 640-acre section for 10 miles on either side of the track. thanks for that insight and additional background info, Travis. “You don’t study this and think on it for a year or two.”. Critics. February 20, 2020 by Andrew Graham 19 Comments. I’m so glad Wyomingites are commenting and asking questions. “Trona is a mineral used to make soda ash, the principal ingredient in baking soda, global glass manufacturing, pollution control systems, as well as other critical chemical applications.”. Casper, Wyoming. I understand the urge to move quickly, but it seems the State needs to conduct thorough due diligence and make sure this is in the best interests of Wyoming moving forward. Gordon said the state has missed out on a “once-in-a-generation opportunity.” Photo: Sarah Averill // Buckrail. “We can benefit in a way that perhaps no other entity can [by] doing the whole deal,” Gordon said. HOUSTON (Reuters) - The state of Wyoming will bid on a package of land and minerals in Wyoming and Colorado owned by troubled Occidental Petroleum Corp, public officials agreed on Monday. [email protected] - “I am disappointed that Wyoming was not the ultimate buyer of the Union Pacific Land Grant lands and minerals. The announcement by Occidental also known as Oxy, is not final, so the State will keep its bid confidential at this time, until there is a final sale or Wyoming withdraws its bid. You can also comment on the bills directly by going to the “Comment” tab of https://www.wyoleg.gov/Legislation/2020/SF0138 & https://www.wyoleg.gov/Legislation/2020/HB0249. Indepth News about Wyoming People, Places & Policy. There is also a cluster of surface land in Utah and at least one parcel in Colorado. [The purchase] “….needs to earn at least 4 to 4.5%….” That’s an extremely poor return expectation given the risk involved (a recent stock chart of Occidental (“OXY”) speaks volumes to this risk). Buckrail is a web and mobile-based Entertainment & News media outlet providing Jackson, Wyoming and the surrounding communities with Breaking Local News & Community Updates. Support in-depth legislative coverage with a tax-deductible donation, Wapiti LGBTQ couple report being accosted, told to leave, For Wyo’s untaxed generations, the 'free ride' may be over, It’s time for Wyoming to reform trapping regulations, https://www.wyoleg.gov/Legislators/2020/H, https://www.wyoleg.gov/Legislators/2020/S, https://www.wyoleg.gov/Legislation/2020/SF0138, https://www.wyoleg.gov/Legislation/2020/HB0249, For Wyo’s untaxed generations, the ‘free ride’ may be over, Week 32: The pandemic in Wyoming from Oct. 17-23. regarding how Occidental would cover its debts and maintain investor dividends. The State Land and Investment Board and the Office of State Lands and Investments will conduct much of the analysis. I agree this is a great time for the state to act. The Constitution requires that those funds are only available for prudent investments, as guided by state statute, and are not available to help offset the current budget shortfalls or to directly pay for the costs of running the state government. That’s why there is so much animosity in this Wyoming for the US Forest Service, BLM and Park Service. Just a quick question , is this a buy out / bailout of Occidental petroleum who for years recieved tax breaks from Wyoming ? I’m all for more public access, but the revenue side of things don’t seem to justify this purchase. Land grant was the method the federal government used to encourage construction of the Union Pacific Railroad. Another angle to it – If the state is spending more than it is bringing in, funneling money into investment may force financial discipline. “This land would contain a substantial amount of producing Oxy wells. In November 2019 Occidental solicited bids for 200,000 acres in Wyoming and Colorado, and hoped for $700 million, according to Reuters. Anadarko itself bought Union Pacific Resource Group in 2000. The “drilling acreage” offered was mostly in Wyoming, and sources familiar with the offer put the value between $500 million and $700 million, according to the report. Right now the legislature can readily access our savings. Is the State going to develop a government-run Oil and Gas company to continue to operate these wells?” – Purchasing mineral rights/surface rights does not make you the operator of the property. Benjamin Wilson Will they hire a company to operate? Certainly more than double the size of the actual purchase itself. Real estate is a great way to do that. The third quarter of 2019 was a disaster for Occidental (the showed a loss of $794 Million with a special expense item of $897 Million). Exceeding our target bid was a risk we were not willing to take.”. And, what about the local and state property taxes that will evaporate once this million acres goes into state ownership? Gordon and other officials suggested Occidental’s urgency to pay off debt offers Wyoming a “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity. “If the state were to move forward with this purchase, it would potentially be the biggest land purchase by a government in the U.S. since the federal government purchased Alaska,” Perkins wrote colleagues in a letter obtained by WyoFile on Wednesday. (307) 222-8609 The “drilling acreage” offered was mostly in Wyoming, and sources familiar with the offer put the value between $500 million and $700 million, according to the report. Required fields are marked *, Name ( first and last name are required ) *. – OXY’s stock price reflects the market’s expectation of OXY’s ability to earn and maintain profits. Officials hope to buy the acreage and additional mineral rights spread across the state’s “checkerboard” — a mix of privately held, state and federal lands — from Occidental, Gordon said Monday. “The opportunity is now,” said Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Eli Bebout (R-Riverton). “Around people that work for Occidental … that there was maybe some interest. Transparency and both legislative and public input here are essential before making this decision. The land for sale included roughly 1 million acres of surface land and 4 million acres in mineral rights. I’m a bit skeptical on this purchase. [email protected] (307) 222-8609 - Identify yourself with full name and city. Safe bonds will yield less than 4.5%. “If we can make this thing work it will add a future to our investment portfolio that we don’t have right now,” Meier said. Best / phil hocker. Let’s invest and not just spend! It could be some time before the public learns the true figure Wyoming would pay, even as lawmakers debate opening the states’ billion-dollar savings accounts for the significant expenditure. Thanks. 2. And some is leased to private parties that also deny public access. A news report said Occidental sought $700 million for just a portion of its regional properties last fall. Land and mineral rights for a piece of land that was sought after by the State of Wyoming, has been sold to a private company, according to an announcement on October 20. Already, the state will spend the account down to $632 million by the end of 2024, according to estimates the Legislative Service Office provided the Joint Appropriations Committee this year. Thank you Andrew for your prompt and diligent work on this. State of Residence *AlabamaAlaskaArizonaArkansasCaliforniaColoradoConnecticutDelawareDistrict Of ColumbiaFloridaGeorgiaHawaiiIdahoIllinoisIndianaIowaKansasKentuckyLouisianaMaineMarylandMassachusettsMichiganMinnesotaMississippiMissouriMontanaNebraskaNevadaNew HampshireNew JerseyNew MexicoNew YorkNorth CarolinaNorth DakotaOhioOklahomaOregonPennsylvaniaRhode IslandSouth CarolinaSouth DakotaTennesseeTexasUtahVermontVirginiaWashingtonWest VirginiaWisconsinWyomingOutside of the U.S. Tweets by @WyoFile Mark Gordon announced Monday that he and other top elected officials are exploring the purchase of 1 million acres and another 4 million acres of underground mineral rights across southern Wyoming, Utah and Colorado from Occidental Petroleum. If you look at state land in Teton County, most of it is off limits to state residents……NO TRESPASSING signs everywhere. WYOMING — Occidental Petroleum today announced it has signed a purchase agreement with a global asset management firm, knocking Wyoming out of the running in a bid to buy land and mineral rights on a million acres worth of land along the I-80 corridor. WY is not going to swap sections with the Feds. Your email address will not be published. Gordon believes the state could benefit from surface uses of the land like wind, solar and grazing leases.”, Gordon’s office said that the governor and State Loan and Investment Board “planned to use Wyoming’s Permanent Funds for the purchase. to impact the economics. The “drilling acreage” offered was mostly in Wyoming, and sources familiar with the offer put the value between $500 … Gordon and members of the State Loan and Investment Board (SLIB) participated in the bid process to pursue a land purchase for the public and diversify Wyoming’s investments. “There’s going to be a period where we may not have the funds that we’ve had in the past as far as our cash flow,” Wyoming State Treasurer Curt Meier said Monday.