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Royally Fracking Ripped Off: "Drilling is Just the Beginning"

Royalty Rip-off
Around the country, landowners are suing Chesapeake and other drillers for massive deductions from royalty checks.

Pennsylvanians are also discovering an entirely new issue, one that has little to do with royalties but a lot to do with gas companies and their leases: Drilling companies are taking loans out against their properties.
McFarland said that oil and gas companies have taken out lines of credit against the value of the mineral rights on properties they have under long-term lease. “Oil and gas companies do that all the time to give themselves enough cash to drill, but here in Texas, the lien only attaches to the oil or gas company’s mineral interests — it doesn’t affect the surface owner at all,” he said.Gary Miller, of Ohioville in south-west Pennsylvania, went to his credit union in October 2013 to take a loan out on his 12-acre property. “I filed for a mortgage, and not long afterward I got a call to come into the credit union to take a look at something,” he said.When he went in, he was told that a title search had discovered a lien on his property. “I couldn’t believe it. I looked, and sure enough, there was a lien on my house for $500,000. Then they told me to take a second look: It turned out it wasn’t for a half a million dollars, it was for half a billion dollars. Can you imagine? I had a $500 million lien on my house!”


The state Public Utility Commission uses an industry law firm for advice on oil and gas zoning ordinances.

Over the past two years Pennsylvania has employed a Harrisburg law firm with ties to the oil and gas industry for advice on zoning rules directed at that very same industry.
The law firm of McNees, Wallace and Nurick is an associate member of the gas industry trade group, the Marcellus Shale Coalition. The firm’s attorneys routinely represent energy companies before the state Public Utility Commission (PUC).


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im anti

im anti fuck up america where we live, breath, and breed.

yeah cuz europe needs to buy all of our gas and not russia's gas,

have you looked into the idiotic plan they have to ship gas to europe, ridiculous dude.

do your homework then come back.

how bout we tap all that oil that lidsay williams says is sitting up there in alaska.

anyway none of that will happen , they love making us americans shell out 3.60 a gallon for gas.

"He's this eccentric Ghandi-Like figure that you cant touch with the normal bribes that people respond to."
the man Doug Wead on DR. RON PAUL

Are there seriously anit-frackers here?

How is it possible when 99.9% of the propaghanda comes from the house of Saud. Are that bad at organic chemistry ? What is it ? I don't get it. Gas connot even mix with water --it's a gas. Really what is it ? How do you expect us to pay our bills without manufacturing. This is literally our only way out of the deficit at this point, literally.

This is classic propaganda:

How is it possible when 99.9% of the propaghanda comes from the house of Saud. Are that bad at organic chemistry ? What is it ? I don't get it. Gas connot even mix with water --it's a gas. Really what is it ? How do you expect us to pay our bills without manufacturing. This is literally our only way out of the deficit at this point, literally.

You'll probably be glad to

You'll probably be glad to know the board voted out Aubrey Mclendon last year for his shenanigans.

Southern Agrarian

Before you vote down any post

I ask;
Have you experienced having everything of value in your life taken away from you?
Have you been robbed of your property, wealth and health?
Have you watched your family become ill and suffer with no ability to restore their health?
Have you watched your healthy livestock drop dead and produce dozens of still born or defective offspring?
Have you been through a nightmare while millions are spent to create an insulting illusion of health, wealth and prosperity?

egapele's picture

I went back and upvoted

all your comments.

Truth has a way of hurting bank accounts but in the end it always wins.


As a business investor I often feel like I'm in the Twilight Zone.
I see the vast opportunity in hydro fracturing.
Yet I am in contact on a daily basis with people who broke their asses saving and slaving to build a farm or new house, only to have to pack up their family and go live elsewhere often with family or friends.
Because their land is uninhabitable and some can't even borrow against mortgage free real estate. Yet some still have a mortgage or property taxes to pay.
It's trashed.
These are the kind of people that if they finally get a cash settlement, they don't just worry about themselves.
They sacrifice their money, time and energy to go and spread the word in hopes of saving a town or state that they love.

Local governments fail to account for $17 million in impact fee

Municipal and county governments across the state have failed to account for how $17 million in natural gas impact money was spent.

Nearly half the local townships and boroughs receiving impact money and a quarter of the counties did not send required reports this month to the state Public Utility Commission (PUC).

“We don’t have a lot of them at this point, but they do tend to trickle in,” says PUC spokeswoman Jennifer Kocher.

The forms, which document how last year’s impact fee money was spent, were due on April 15th. Although the PUC is charged with collecting the forms, it does not have the legal authority to audit them.

Fracked by Liens

by Chip Northrup on December 28, 2012
Gas drillers pledge their leases at banks to borrow the money to drill wells and pay contractors. When they can’t pay, the bank forecloses on the loan and the contractor’s file mechanics liens against the encumbered asset. “The encumbered asset” is legal talk for “your farm,” as many hapless folks are finding out. A mechanics liens from a contractor would certainly go against the leased mineral rights, and if the lease contained surface access (which it would have to) then, conceivably they could get a judgment against the land owner. Regardless, if the lien is legitimate it will cloud the title – so if the landowner goes to sell or refinance, they may have to pay off the contractor just to get rid of the mechanic’s lien. Anyone that is Compulsively Integrated into a well could face such an encumbrance. Plus the encumbrance of the banks that these leases have been pledged to en masse to drill the wells. Those can find their way back to the individual leases, since that was the collateral in the driller’s loan: Somebody’s farm. A lot of farms.

Then there’s the little problem of trying to refinance when you’ve leased your mineral rights – and the mortgage company says take a hike.

Guest column from Berks Gas

Guest column from Berks Gas Truth: Response to Schwank Mayor's support to tax on fracking


The science on fracking is in. Shale gas development is contaminating our water, polluting our air, contributing to climate change at a higher rate than previously understood, causing earthquakes, making us sick, and more. Recent studies have even linked fracking to birth defects in Colorado and right here in Pennsylvania.

None of this comes as news to the countless Pennsylvanians whose lives have been turned upside down by fracking and the industrial build-out that has followed. Right now, there are Pennsylvanians who can’t drink their water, can’t use it to clean, can’t even use it to flush their toilets. Right now, public health physicians are documenting cases of frack rash, respiratory problems, nosebleeds, headaches, stomach problems, neurological disorders, depression, and even certain cancers in Pennsylvanians who live near fracking. Right now, Pennsylvanians whose homes have been impacted by gas operations are finding that they owe much more on their homes than they’re now worth.