CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - An unprecedented special state oil and gas lease auction to handle a rush to drill for oil in eastern Wyoming has netted a near-record $42 million. The Office of State Lands and Investments held the auction Friday. Figures released Monday show bids for the right to drill on state land ranged as high as $3,200 an acre. That's comparable to the high prices paid at a state lease auction in May, a sale that netted a record $45.6 million for Wyoming.
The special sale was Wyoming's second highest-grossing on record. Harold Kemp, head of Wyoming's state minerals leasing, says the sale could be a high point in the recent oil speculation. Kemp says nearly all state leases in southeast Wyoming have been bought up.