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House Sends Senate a Bill to Improve Energy Leasing and Permit Process

November 20, 2013
Press Release
WASHINGTON– The House of Representatives today passed legislation to improve the current leasing and permitting process for resource development on federal land. Congressman Rob Bishop (UT-01), Chairman of the House Public Lands and Environmental Regulation Subcommittee, has been a leading proponent of the - Federal Lands Jobs and Energy Security Act [H.R. 1965] and lauded the House's support for the measure.

The average time for lease holders to obtain a state-issued permit to drill on approved  state land is 12-15 days.  According to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) the average time for lease holders to obtain a permit on federal land is 307 days. It currently takes 30% longer to develop resources on federal land than on state land.

"It's time for the Administration to take their stranglehold off of western states.  In states like Utah, federal land accounts for nearly 67% of the state. Federal land means no property tax revenue and no tax revenue means no funding for education and other essential community programs.  Revenue from recreation and conservation is not enough and I challenge anyone who says that it is. It's unfair that children whose families cannot afford private school don't have access to the same educational resources as states like New York and Connecticut. The only way western states can generate funding for education is to utilize the diverse resources found on federal land. There has to be a fair balance between recreation, conservation, and development. I support conservation where it makes sense and it's time that the Administration support energy development where it also makes sense," said Congressman Bishop. 

Specifically, H.R. 1965

·         Eliminates unnecessary delays regarding the leasing process for oil and natural gas projects on federal lands

·         Reforms the permitting process so that once a lease is in hand energy companies will be able to more easily complete the requirements necessary to begin development of the resources,

·         Seeks to set clearer rules for the development of U.S. oil shale resources