Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Mike Enzi and John Barrasso, both R-Wyo., are working to re-vamp current law to stop the federal pick pocketing of Wyoming’s federal mineral royalties. The senators penned a letter to Senate leadership asking for support to repeal unfair mineral royalty distribution.
“Balancing the federal budget on the backs of States with federal mineral resources and breaking a longstanding revenue sharing agreement is not good policy and should be reversed on the first available vehicle,” the senators wrote. “We respectfully seek your support to include language to restore states’ fair share of mineral leasing revenues in the next bill with appropriations or revenue provisions that moves in regular order in the Senate.”
Enzi and Barrasso are co-sponsors of a bill currently pending in the Senate that would address the federal mineral royalty theft. The senators are working to have that language signed into law as soon as possible.
Last month Enzi and Barrasso asked Senate appropriators to disregard the Administration’s proposal to take tens of millions of dollars in mineral lease money from Wyoming and other energy producing states. The senators also formed a coalition of legislators from affected states in January and took the first step toward effecting change by sending a letter in opposition of the provision to the Secretary of the Interior and the Director of the Office of Management and Budget on Jan. 29. They also worked to include an amendment in the Senate’s version of the fiscal year 2009 budget disapproving of the action in the omnibus bill.
The senators said they will continue to fight net receipt sharing to ensure that Wyoming’s share of its federal mineral royalties will be protected and put to use in Wyoming, not to pay more D.C. bureaucrats.