Activity in Sabine CO. might be helpful in getting something going in Southern Sabine PARISH, but the mineral situation is completely different. In Sabine Co., TX there are large areas where the dominant entity is the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. The U.S. Forest Service has ultimate control of the surface and the mineral estates.
Because of their environmental masters (Sierra Club, TCA, Center for Biological Diverisity, et al) - (you know, the "donate here" crowd) the USFS decided to NOT allow timber sales... years ago. Then, in Feb., 2016, the "public servants" at the USFS decided not to allow any leasing of the minerals under any National Forests (> 600,000 ac.) in East Texas, because their environmental masters didn't like it. Of course, some federal employees are hoping to make retirement & start another career with these same groups. Because the locals can't tax these federal lands, there is no money to fund the schools, roads, courts, hospitals, etc... That is why (in the past) there has been revenue-sharing for timber sales, oil & gas lease bonuses & royalties. BUT - guess what? When the Sierra Club (California), Center for Biological Diversity (Arizona), et al crack the whip, the USFS (D.C.) jumps through as many hoops as it takes to satisfy.
Consequently, the poor, ignorant indigenous slobs living in Angelina, Houston, Jasper, Nacogdoches, Sabine, San Augustine, Shelby, Trinity, Walker Counties... well - they can just Sit On It.
Why don't they just move? That'll leave more room for the Woodpecker and the Pine Snake, and, it'll cut down on the lawsuits because of huge, dead pine trees falling on their hovels, caves and shacks!
Why should California, Arizona and Washington, D.C. put up with timber industry and oil patch jobs being created? Any day, somebody from any number of these groups might do a fly-over and get all mad and everything. Someone might spook a Woodpecker that might fly up and get nailed by a turbo-prop that could splatter Woodpecker excrement on the Sierra Club's windshield! That would be embarrassing! Good Grief!
In some areas, the original mineral retained ownership of minerals under present day National Forest lands. The process to put a well site there is a bit different vs places where the the federal government owns the minerals. The BLM administers the lease sales. I agree there are problems with the process. The best way to influence it is to get involved with Forest Plan revisions or BLM oil and gas lease sales analysis. Contact the Forest Supervisor's office in Lufkin for more information. Forest Plan revisions are on temporary hold while they work other forests. And the geologist assigned to the National Forests and Grasslands in Texas passed away earlier this year or late last year.
National Forests & Grasslands in Texas
2221 N. Raguet St.
Lufkin, Texas 75904
I have been to 3 meetings in person and attended a lengthy conference call since 2016. I have recorded (with full knowledge of the participants) one in-person meeting and the conference call. First lie - "the NEPA analysis will be at the end of this year (2016)". Next lie - there would be a lease sale "in April of 2017". Next - that offering (April of 2017>that didn't happen) would be "airtight" against the demands made by out-of-state environmental activists. Next - "the Center for Biological Diversity does not get any federal monies" - they DO. Next - "there is a way you might prevail in getting the lease sale done before April 2017". What a way to run over 600,000 acres of land in East Texas. Ruling by fiat, delays, plug-jerking, excuses, more regulations, little or no money to local governments, collusion with "donate here" internet disruptors, finger-pointing, staff problems, apathy, confusion, double-talk, and lethargy (except when "the Center" or Sierra Club want something). Mark Van Every creamed the sale of leases in East Texas (along with his boss in Georgia) - only to take off almost immediately for North Dakota. His replacement has not done anything to help industry or the locals. A whole bunch of lip-service, deception and mismanagement of resources.
Better in my book to not lease at all until someone with some brains takes over and straightens out the mess that has been made at the BLM over the years.
The BLM is the lesser of problems. There have been many reforms implemented. The USFS is more dysfunctional, by far. If you ever get a chance to go to one of these public meetings, GO. 97% of what you will hear from the public will be frustration, horror stories and consternation in trying to deal with, co-exist with or get any help whatsoever... from the public servants of the Department of Agriculture's United States Forest Service. Within one week, I'm taking my recordings to Louie Gohmert. I attended a conference at which he spoke. He specifically backed-up my statements here, and gave specific figures about what the USFS has done to Sabine Co., TX