University Lands O&G Lease Sale Earns $34.5 Million

The Board for Lease of University Lands awarded 143 oil and gas leases Wednesday, November 17, 2004, for bonuses totaling more than $34.5 million. Leases receiving high bids were located in Andrews, Crane, Ward, Loving, Winkler, Pecos, Upton, Reagan, Crockett and Schleicher Counties in Texas.

The two highest tract bids of $2,084,197 were offered by Meagher Oil & Gas Properties, Inc. on tracts in Loving and Winkler Counties. The bids were also the highest per acre bids at $3,253.00 per acre. The average high bid per acre on tracts sold was $482.50. Approximately 71,618 acres were leased bringing the total University lands under lease to 1,182,943 acres.

The top five bidders were Meagher Oil & Gas Properties, Inc., Chalfant Properties, Inc., Henry Petroleum LP, Pure Resources, Inc. and XTO Energy Inc. Bonuses paid in 2004 totaled $73.5 million, the highest amount ever received by University Lands in a single year.

R.H. "Steve" Stevens, Jr., vice-chairman of the Board for Lease of University Lands and a Regent of the Texas A&M University System said, "The results of this sale clearly indicate there is a continued sense of optimism in the Permian Basin oil patch. We greatly appreciate the support industry has provided for higher education in Texas over the years in their pursuit of oil and gas on University lands." Regent Stevens, a six-year veteran of the Board for Lease, noted that this was his last lease sale and remarked, "I have enjoyed working with the Board and I am pleased with how competently the business of the state has been taken care of by Steve Hartmann [Executive Director of University Lands] and his staff. I applaud them."

In a continuing effort to support the petroleum industry's leasing and development activities on University Lands, the Board for Lease of University Lands will schedule two oil and gas lease sales in 2005, in April and October. Information about these lease sales may be obtained from the office of University Lands – West Texas Operations, P.O. Box 553, Midland, Texas 79702, phone 432-684-4404, fax 432-682-7456. Additional information about University Lands is available on the internet at

The Board for Lease is composed of the Commissioner of the General Land Office and regents from the University of Texas and Texas A&M University Systems. Oil and gas bonuses and royalties earned from University Lands are deposited in the Permanent University Fund, a constitutionally-created endowment fund that benefits institutions in the two university systems.