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DOI seeking nominations for new coal royalty valuation committee

The Department of the Interior is seeking nominations for a new committee that will examine the value taxpayers get for developing resources on federal and tribal lands.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced the creation of the Royalty Policy Committee after a moratorium on federal coal leases was lifted by executive order.

A note scheduled to be published April 3 in the Federal Register says the committee "will provide advice to the secretary on the fair market value of, and the collection of revenues derived from, the development of energy and mineral resources on federal and Indian lands."

The committee will include up to 28 members and be chaired by officials from the Office of Natural Resources Revenue. The directors of the U.S. bureaus of Indian Affairs, Land Management, Ocean Energy Management and Safety and Environmental Enforcement, as well as a representative of the secretary's Immediate Office and the assistant secretary of Indian Affairs, will serve as nonvoting, ex-officio members.

Nonfederal members will be appointed to three-year terms and will include up to six members representing the governors of states that receive more than $10 million yearly in royalty revenues from onshore and offshore federal leases; up to four members representing American Indian tribes engaging in activities subject to laws concerning tribal mineral development; up to six members representing various mineral and/or energy stakeholders in federal and Indian royalty policy; and up to four members representing academia and public interest groups.

The notice says nominations should include a resume giving a description of the nominee's qualifications.

The committee will meet at least once every calendar year as well as other times a designated federal officer deems necessary.