Please Contact Our Representatives to Oppose Forced Pooling House Bill 2688 (HB 2688)

Dear Fellow West Virginia Land & Mineral Owners,

House Bill 2688 (HB 2688) hasn’t passed in the House or Senate yet.  It was just passed by the House Energy Committee yesterday so it will now go to the House floor for a vote, maybe as soon as next week. Then the Senate will vote on it.  So, there is still time for us to stop this bill!

Please contact your local representatives:

Every West Virginian and anyone who owns property in West Virginia on this site especially should be contacting their local representatives to oppose this bill.  It is a bad bill.

Scroll down on the link above and contact your House district representatives first and then your Senate district representative.

Here is a drafted letter that I urge you to send to each representative:

"As a land and mineral owner in                    County, WV, I am writing to inform you of my opposition to any legislation, more specifically HB 2688, that supports and advances the practice of seizure of private property in the form of 'unitization', 'lease integration', or 'forced pooling' of my privately held mineral rights.       

Legislation of this type is a violation of our constitutional rights regarding private property, and will strip landowners of their negotiation strength as well, should they be willing to lease their property."

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Replies to This Discussion

The bill is now off of the agenda for the House Judiciary Committee this week thanks in large part to the efforts of Delegate Pat McGeehan.  Please take the time to thank Pat.  He told the House Speaker that he is prepared to speak for hours on the landowners behalf to stop the bill.  But make no mistake, the fight is not over as there are plenty of votes to pass the bill if we the public don't speak up and make it clear that we will not have our property rights compromised.

Pat McGeehan    (R - Hancock, 01)

CONTACT Capitol Office: Room 226E, Building 1 State Capitol Complex Charleston, WV 25305 Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3397 Home: 616 Florida Avenue #5 Chester, WV, 26034 Home Phone: (304) 374-7018 Business Phone: (304) 374-7018

On the other hand, these two members of the Senate (Craig Blair and Mitch Carmichael) need to hear from those of us that oppose the bill as they have indicated that they don't mind the bill as it helps the Oil and Gas industry.  But at what cost -- the cost of the rights of private landowners and their negotiating power.

Craig Blair    (R - Berkeley, 15)

CONTACT Capitol Office: Room 217W, Building 1 State Capitol Complex Charleston, WV 25305 Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7867 Home: 47 Wasser Drive Martinsburg, WV, 25403 Home Phone: (304) 754-5040 Business Phone: (304) 754-9031

Mitch Carmichael    (R - Jackson, 04)

Majority Leader

CONTACT Capitol Office: Room 227M, Building 1 State Capitol Complex Charleston, WV 25305 Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7855 Home: 18 Colonial Drive Ripley, WV, 25271 Home Phone: (304) 372-4667 Business Phone: (304) 372-4667

West Virginia residents and landowners,

The House Judiciary Committee is voting on the Forced Pooling Bill known as HB 2688 this Monday morning.  Mr. Ryan Weld is currently undecided which way to vote.  His vote could be the deciding vote!

Those who oppose forced pooling should email Ryan Weld. 

Ryan Weld    (R - Brooke, 02)

CONTACT Capitol Office: Room 224E, Building 1 State Capitol Complex Charleston, WV 25305 Capitol Phone: (304) 340-3367Home: 2225 Marianna Street Wellsburg, WV, 26070 Home Phone: (304) 737-4185 Business Phone: (304) 670-6605

Also, here is a link to the all of the members of the House Judiciary Committee.

I wouldn't hurt to email each member:

House Judiciary  - Agenda

Monday, February 23, 2015, 9:00 AM

Location: Room 418

9:00 AM Meeting called to order

Roll call

  Approval of minutes

  SB357/HB2566  Coal Jobs and Safety Act of 2015 

HB2688  Providing for the unitization of interests in drilling units in connection with all horizontal oil or gas wells

The WV Royalty Owner's Association support of the forced pooling bill HB 2688 should be discredited because the organizer and president of WVROA, Ronald Hayhurst, is accused of conspiring with the Marshall County Commission to defraud the plaintiff of his oil and gas rights. Judge Bailey denied motions to dismiss the complaint so there must be something there.   

This case is currently in Federal Court at the United States Court for the Northern District of West Virginia.  Please see attachment.  
This complaint is unbelievable against Ronald Hayhurst.  This information needs to be presented to the Legislature and House Judiciary Committee ASAP in my opinion.  It is possible that Hayhurst organized the WV Royalty Owners Association as way to create political influence for the acceptance and false belief for WV mineral rights owners and politicians that forced pooling somehow is good for private citizens.  I don't know where to start regarding the conduct of his fraudulent business tactics to steal and sell 1238 acres of mineral rights that were purportedly "delinquent" on $27 of taxes.  It is egregious.  And the fact that he is running this business from a home in Orlando makes it all the more suspect.   
It should be considered that Ronald Hayhurst created the WV Royalty Owners Association and supports this bill in order to allow his fraudulent business tactics to prosper at the dire expense of actual mineral owners.   

Delegate Pat McGeehan's column in Ohio Valley Shale Play entitled 'Forced Pooling’ Bad Idea Economically, Ethically:


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