Bi-Partisan Royalties Legislation in D.C.

Democratic New Mexico Sen. Tom Udall and Republican Wyoming Sen. Mike Enzi introduced legislation this week that would allow states to collect their own mineral royalties, protecting money that is rightfully owed to the state. The bill would effectively eliminate a collection fees charged by the federal government, which amounts to approximately $40 million per year. The bipartisan State Mineral Revenue Protection Act is co-sponsored by Senators John Barrasso of Wyoming, Cory Gardner of Colorado and Orrin Hatch of Utah.
Currently, the federal government charges states a 2 percent fee, ostensibly to cover collection and disbursement costs. This legislation would ensure that states can continue to receive their 50 percent share of mineral royalties by giving them the option to administer their own programs, as opposed to relying on Washington.
Wyoming Republican Congresswoman Liz Cheney recently introduced identical legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives.