U.S. Senators John Barrasso and Mike Enzi were among others introducing the State Mineral Revenue Protection Act Tuesday, in hopes that it would protect money they say is rightfully owed to the states under the Mineral Leasing Act.
The bipartisan group of senators say the piece of legislation would allow states the option of collecting their own share of federal mineral revenue. Senator Enzi says in a media release more than $53 million is owed just to the State of Wyoming. A grand total of nearly $111 million is owed to all 50 states,a according to his figures.
U.S. Representative Cynthia Lummis introduced a companion bill on Tuesday as well - the . In a media release, she says it would protect Wyoming's share of the revenue from the federal government.
Representative Lummis says under the Mineral Leasing Act, the federal government is required to pay 50 percent of mineral royalties back to the states. She says it's written into law - and not negotiable. Her legislation would amend the MLA to grant states the option to collect their share of those royalties, similar to the bill introduced in the U.S. Senate.
To read a copy of the bill introduced into the Senate, and Senator Enzi's figures related to the amounts owed to each state, click on the attachments below.