Are you a landowner who has paid the property taxes yearly, maintained the land, and supported the community in which the land lies only to find you own but a portion, or worse, none, of the sub-surface mineral rights? Are the sub-surface reservations a 100 years old or more? Do you consider this an outrage that heirs of an a party who owned YOUR land over 100 years ago can rob YOUR heirs and YOU of the full compensation due you for leasing your lands? Do you know friends or neighbors who are in this unhappy situation? I am sure you do as mineral rights reservations of 50-100% are frightfully common in Pennsylvania.
If so, please contact your senator asking them to support Senate Bill 445 that Senator Yaw of Bradford County is trying to get to the floor for a vote. Please see his website where SB 445 is explained. BTW, his is a terrific, information packed site, one of the best I have ever seen by a government official. I urge you to explore it and to shoot him an email thanking him for his efforts on our behalf.
In addition to supporting Senator Yaw we need to contact our respective state senators to ask that they support SB 445. I have contacted my senator down here in Dauphin County and have emailed several landowners from my area asking them to do the same. This is important for the state as well because much of the state forest and game lands have their mineral rights reserved by a family of lumber barons from a 100 years ago. These heirs own mineral rights to 27,000 acres of Pa land. A hundred years ago their forefathers stripped and raped the forests of its lumber and now they want to continue the practice beneath our feet! Many land owners in Clinton Co. have zero sub-surface ownership rights and have O & G goons climbing all over their land without any compensation, or I might add PERMISSION, to the landowner who pays the property taxes and maintains that land! Can you imagine how violated and helpless they must feel?
Here is a link where you can easily locate your State Senator:
PLEASE, I URGE YOU TO INFORM AS MANY AS YOU CAN OF THIS BILL AND REQUEST THEY CONTACT THEIR RESPECTIVE STATE SENATORS. WE CAN GET OUR VOICES HEARD!
Agree with Little Cougar, well said.
Thank you for informing me of SB 445.
I have e-mailed Senator Scarnati and have strongly expressed my objections to SB 445.
It ain't broke, so no need to try to fix it.
Do we really need to set up an additional government bureaucracy to needlessly meddle in our lives?
Does Senator Yaw have a niece or nephew that needs a cushy goverment job managing SB 445?
I invite all of you who object to such nonsense to contact their state Senator and express their hope that he /she votes against SB 445.
I intend to make sure my voice is heard...sick of somebody meddling into my life and others who finally are getting something. These people that suddenly are beating their drums about the mineral rights they don't own surely knew this when they bought the land...I can just hear them now bashing all of us who were smart enough to hold onto them...they must be blue with envy...and sure...if some politician thinks he can get enough of these "moaner groaners" to vote for him...he will push anything for a vote. They are just peed-off because the seller was smart enough not to sell his mineral rights and who in their right mind would sell the mineral rights if they had a revenue producing well on the property they were selling. Well I can out groan any of them...and I just need a good cause to get me to roar!!!! They don't call me little cougar for nothing!!!!! I'm as angry as a cat on a hot tin roof...
I think some of you are missing the spirit of this proposal. Did you read it? It is for mineral rights that were withheld ages ago. This benefits the landowner who has, for example, perhaps 50% of his mineral rights held by a sub-surface reservation that occurred many, many years ago. Are you telling me a long lost heir should then be able to share in that surface owner's good fortune by taking half of the royalties from any production? In the case of your reservation you are fine as there is a producing well and your reservation was within the past 21 years according to SB 445.
My family bought and held on to mineral rights for over 60 years waiting for these rights to have value. We were offered several opportunities to sell or lease at lowball values and sat on them waiting for the right time. Every surface owner buying the surface rights knew that they came with no mineral rights. Now that the time has come, they want to take it away from us. This is nothing less than legalized theft. Greed at its finest. Words do not express the contempt I have for the supporters of this law.
absolutely...this law will hurt more then help. As to the reply that it takes time to search these properties by the O&G...they have teams of experts to do that and they know where to look. Trust me...they found me!!!!! and it didn't take them long. I say NO, NO, NO, NO louder then before to this SB 445. Stay out of my business and those who don't have the mineral rights when they bought the land knew that...stop the MADNESS NOW!
If I rember correct till 1995 Venango county added an extra tax on to your porperty tax for mineral rights. Any other county do the same?
I applaud you Laurel for posting this and seeking like you are...
I happen to think that 21 years is a bit much though...more like 12 would make sense as most of the present leases are for five years...and of course there are different scenarios for each one. Here is the bill proposed.
SB 445 - Legislation which will create a period of time in determining when an owner has officially abandoned their mineral rights. Currently, landowners across the state are facing the dilemma of owning surface rights, but not owning his or her mineral rights. Furthermore, the subsurface owner of the mineral rights may not even know they are the owner. Ultimately, this abandonment is an obstacle for the current landowner who would like to use their property for the development of natural gas.
My legislation would deem mineral rights in real property abandoned after a period of 21 years of nonuse of the mineral rights by a subsurface owner. Nonuse of mineral rights is the absence of an issuance of a permit to drill a well by the Department of Environmental Protection, actual production or withdrawal of minerals from the property and the underground storage of minerals. If the subsurface landowner chooses to simply not develop the mineral rights, they could record a claim of interest with the county Recorder of Deeds within three months of the effective date of this legislation or 21 years from the nonuse, whichever is later. The 21year period is similar to current Pennsylvania abandonment law relating to adverse possession.
Now after reading the above proposed senate bill again....... I am a bit confused with this talk of taxes on mineral rights to those that own mineral rights...if someone only owns the subsurface land and does not own (thereby does not lease) the mineral rights (incl. of gas/oil) then the county should know if the taxes have been paid by the mineral owner?
and 21 years is way too much....if the party that this bill is speaking of ..is an OWNER of mineral rights then surely if they abandoned it even one year then it could have been sold because of non-payment of property/mineral taxes? I am learning that some of you are being taxed for owning just the mineral rights (not leased from the Lessor)...owned.
Currently, landowners across the state are facing the dilemma of owning surface rights, but not owning his or her mineral rights..
well if they don't own the mineral rights....then the tax bill is being paid by someone??? hello? and if it isn't then did it get sold at auction? Ireland up there says he pays taxes on his "Ownership' of mineral rights alone. Isn't the Senator really talking about abandoned 'leases' ??? I think the Senator is in error here....and he needs to know it....He should be introducing legislation to protect the landowner who has found out that existing leases were done years ago and have been abandoned, thereby the landowner owns both surface and subsurface rights and needs the right to be able to lease or sell again their gas/oil/mineral rights. His bill is expressing about mineral rights owned separately not leased but owned.
true you do have the right to regain the og and mineral rights if they havent been put into developement. You can go about getting them back but impretty sure if the mineral owners signed a lease say 5 years ago the subsurface owner has done something with them to show development and beside the o/g comany owns the oil and gas now not the land owner. i bought my land it was a fee simple transaction years ago i leasesed the oil/gas i dont own them anymore the gas comany dose all get is my cut when they develope the land now the oil and gas is theres till the lease runs out. and ppls have said buyer beware. know what your buying and if you dont shame on you it on the titlle when your sign the paper work Brian
This bill does not make much sense to me. In Pa, oil and gas rights are separate from the mineral rights, yet the bill talks about abandonment of mineral rights if no drilling occurs. You drill for oil and gas, you mine for the minerals. The only drilling done for minerals is to determine what type and amount of mineral reserves are in the ground. Seems like this senator is trying to help owners obtain oil and gas rights by abandoment but the bill states mineral rights which does not apply to the oil and gas rights in Pa.
Either this senator does not know Pa law or he has other motives.