Producers to Take Case to Capitol Hill, White House

Independent producers plan to present a resolution later this month to congressional lawmakers and others in the federal government seeking their support for measures to lift the oil and gas industry from its currently depressed state.

The resolution, which has been signed by "thousands" of producers, calls on the federal government to support: 1) filling the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) with crude oil purchased from domestic producers; 2) reduction of tax penalties on marginal wells and new investment; 3) establishment of a low-cost disaster loan program for producers; 4) investigation of allegations of improper trade practices within domestic markets by foreign oil suppliers; and 5) regulatory reform. DOE already has taken action on the SPR, and both it and Congress are eyeing tax credits for marginal-well production.

The Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) will present the resolution to congressional lawmakers at a press conference scheduled for March 18th on Capitol Hill. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson also has been invited to attend. The resolution was developed at an Oil Price Crisis Summit in December hosted by Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating.

Separately, a spokeswoman said IPAA also is pushing for a meeting between the producing leadership and top White House officials on the state of the industry. "We haven't got word on a date yet," she said.

Susan Parker

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