Uptick in oil activity could mean big money for Oklahoma education

In an area dotted with cows and wind turbines, Oklahomans are about to see a lot of oil activity, and it could mean big money for education.

Paloma Partners has paid more than $1 million for mineral rights to drill on state-owned land in Kingfisher County. That money will go straight to Oklahoma’s classrooms.

“That’s part of our state constitution,” said Harry Birdwell, secretary for Commissioners of the Land Office.

He said oil companies will have a three-year right to drill on the land. Interest those companies pay during that time will go back to the state.

Overall, oil companies are looking at handing over a record total of $137 million to K-12 and higher education.

“During the last three or four years, it’s been down some, and we think that we are beginning to see an uptick in interest, particularly in the SCOOP and STACK areas of Oklahoma, if it’s in the right place and it’s in a big enough quantity,” Birdwell said.

Chad Warmington, president of the Oklahoma Oil and Gas Association, said there’s no doubt oil and gas companies are going to continue to go after these pieces of state-owned land in the future.

“We’re in a boom cycle,” Warmington said. “And it’s going to benefit the state and, again, that’s great for education and great for the state.”

WEBVTT YEAR IN MONEY THAT THEYTURN OVER TO EDUCATION.KOCO’S CRYSTAL PRICE SHOWS USWHY.REPORTER: THIS IS THE LAND WEARE TALKING ABOUT.IT IS IN A RURAL AREA ANDKINGFISHER COUNTY OUTSIDE THETOWN OF CASHION.PALOMA PARTNERS HAS PAID MORETHAN $1 MILLION FOR MINERALRIGHTS TO DRILL ON THIS STATEOWNED LAND.IT WILL GO TO OKLAHOMACLASSROOMS.>> THAT IS PART OF OUR STATECONSTITUTION.REPORTER: HARRY BIRDWELL,SECRETARY FOR COMMISSIONERS OFTHE LAND OFFICE, SAYS OILCOMPANIES WILL HAVE A THREE YEARRIGHT TO DRILL ON THIS LAND ANDINTEREST THEY PAY DURING THATTIME WILL GO BACK TO THE STATE.WITH THE HELP OF OIL COMPANIES,THEY WILL HAND OVER…

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