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State Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn has announced the June oil and gas lease sale generated $4,900,272, bringing the Fiscal Year 2018 total to $106,977,598 – the agency’s single-year record.

The agency’s previous record was set in FY 12 when it collected $102,042,763. During that year, a total of 96,506 acres were sold at an average price of $1,057 per acre. In FY 18, a total of 74,908 acres were sold at an average per acre cost of $1,429.

“I am proud to announce that we have generated more money than ever for our beneficiaries in 2018 with fewer acres of lands sold than during the previous record year,” Dunn said. “Oil and gas is such an integral part of what we do here at the State Land Office; we are fortunate to have such a robust industry in the state and it’s the school children in our state who benefit the most.”

Beneficiaries of the June 2018 lease sale and their respective earnings are:

• Common Schools: $3,929,232
• Water Reservoirs: $641,600
• New Mexico Normal Enabling (NMHU, WNMU, & Northern NM College): $127,200
• New Mexico Miner’s Hospital: $183,240
• University of New Mexico: $19,000

The June sale featured 32 tracts covering 8,179.17 acres in Lea and Roosevelt counties. Total high bids of $4,900,272 was generated by eight bidders. The average price per acre was $599.12.

The monthly sales are held online in sealed and open bidding formats. This month’s top bidder in the sealed bidding format was Artesia-based Chase Oil, which acquired two 320-acre tracts at $2,209 per acre for a total cost of $1,413,760. Chase Oil also submitted the highest bid in the open format, leasing 320 acres at $506.56 per acre for a total cost of $162,100.

“We have laid the groundwork for future generations of New Mexicans to benefit from this agency’s efforts on their behalf,” Dunn added. “Provided the next land commissioner utilizes these critically-important resources in a responsible manner, our beneficiaries should be well taken care of in the coming years.”