WV House Advances Bill to Fix Post-Production Deductions

Earlier this week MDN told you that West Virginia royalty owners are pushing Senate Bill (SB) 360 to fix the issue of post-production deductions drillers take from royalty checks (see WV Royalty Owners Push Bill to Fix Post-Production Deductions). SB 360 would eliminate post-production expenses, such as transportation or severance taxes from royalty owners’ checks. The new news is that the WV House of Delegates is working on its own version of SB 360, called House Bill (HB) 4490. On Wednesday, the House Judiciary Committee voted to report the bill out–that is, they approved the bill to go on to the next step. But the vote, which was a voice vote, was split, indicating the ultimate success of the bill is far from assured. Needless to say drillers are not happy with either SB 360 or HB 4490. According to Anne Blankenship, executive director of the West Virginia Oil and Natural Gas Association, her group (which represents many, perhaps all of WV’s shale drillers) is not actively opposing the bill, but they are letting everyone know they don’t support it–which we call a distinction without a difference. Hundreds of people who work for the drilling industry rallied at the state Capitol in Charleston on Wednesday–there to push for passage of a bill that appears to be on the fast track: HB 4268, the “co-tenancy” bill. Below is an article covering the rally, which mentions HB 4490 on post-production deductions…

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