The deadline for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife to determine whether or not to list the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard as Endangered is fast approaching. It is likely that they will make an announcement prior to the June deadline. If USFW lists the Lizard, the Permian Basin will be changed forever. We continue to advocate for the lack of scientific justification for a listing and are holding out hope.
Last month, United States Speaker of the House John Boehner visited Midland. (For images of that visit , see the photo spread on pages xxxx-xxxx). The visit was arranged by Midland Congressman Mike Conaway. Several PBPA members, including Mark Philpy of Northstar Operating, joined me in providing a Permian Basin oil and gas overview to the Speaker. It was a fantastic opportunity to be able to present our issues directly to the second most powerful person in the U.S. Government. We covered a whole range of important issues, including Intangible Drilling Costs and Percentage Depletion and had quite a lively discussion.
Later that afternoon, we toured a drilling operation courtesy of Norbert Dickman of Fasken Oil and Ranch. We then toured a frac job and our tour guide for that was Clint Walker of Cudd Energy Services. It was a great occasion to demonstrate how a frac job is done and all of the safety precautions that are taken to protect groundwater, not to mention how many employees it takes for one of these projects. The Speaker clearly seemed to enjoy seeing first-hand how these hard working folks produce our energy.
On April 30, the Texas Senate held a meeting in Odessa to discuss the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard. Lieutenant Governor Dewhurst added an Interim Charge to the list of Natural Resource Committee charges to analyze the economic impacts of the proposed DSL listing. Natural Resources chairman Troy Fraser (R-Horseshoe Bay) tapped Senator Kel Seliger (R-Amarillo) to chair this effort. Senators Robert Duncan (R-Lubbock) and Carlos Uresti (D-San Antonio) round out the subcommittee.
At the time of this writing, I can’t report on what was discussed at the meeting but it is likely to result in some legislative proposals. I will report next month what transpired.
Many thanks to all who attended and help support our golf tournament this year. We appreciate your support.