<<Prev Rule

Texas Administrative Code

Next Rule>>
TITLE 16ECONOMIC REGULATION
PART 1RAILROAD COMMISSION OF TEXAS
CHAPTER 3OIL AND GAS DIVISION
RULE §3.78Fees and Financial Security Requirements

(a) Definitions. The following words and terms, when used in this section, shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

  (1) Violation--Noncompliance with a Commission rule, order, license, permit, or certificate relating to safety or the prevention or control of pollution.

  (2) Outstanding violation--A violation for which:

    (A) either:

      (i) a Commission order finding a violation has been entered and all appeals have been exhausted; or

      (ii) an agreed order between the Commission and the organization relating to a violation has been entered; and

    (B) one or more of the following conditions still exist:

      (i) the conditions that constituted the violation have not been corrected;

      (ii) all administrative, civil, and criminal penalties, if any, relating to the violation of such Commission rules, orders, licenses, permits, or certificates have not been paid; or

      (iii) all reimbursements of any costs and expenses assessed by the Commission relating to the violation of such Commission rules, orders, licenses, permits, or certificates have not been paid.

  (3) Commercial facility--A facility whose owner or operator receives compensation from others for the storage, reclamation, treatment, or disposal of oil field fluids or oil and gas wastes that are wholly or partially trucked or hauled to the facility and whose primary business purpose is to provide these services for compensation if:

    (A) the facility is permitted under §3.8 of this title (relating to Water Protection);

    (B) the facility is permitted under §3.57 of this title (relating to Reclaiming Tank Bottoms, Other Hydrocarbon Wastes, and Other Waste Materials);

    (C) the facility is permitted under §3.9 of this title (relating to Disposal Wells) and a collecting pit permitted under §3.8 is located at the facility; or

    (D) the facility is permitted under §3.46 of this title (relating to Fluid Injection into Productive Reservoirs) and a collecting pit permitted under §3.8 is located at the facility.

  (4) Financial security--An individual performance bond, blanket performance bond, letter of credit, or cash deposit filed with the Commission.

  (5) Bay well--Any well under the jurisdiction of the Commission for which the surface location is either:

    (A) located in or on a lake, river, stream, canal, estuary, bayou, or other inland navigable waters of the state and which requires plugging by means other than conventional land-based methods, including, but not limited to, use of a barge, use of a boat, dredging, or building a causeway or other access road to bring in the necessary equipment to plug the well; or,

    (B) located on state lands seaward of the mean high tide line of the Gulf of Mexico in water of a depth at mean high tide of not more than 100 feet that is sheltered from the direct action of the open seas of the Gulf of Mexico.

  (6) Land well--Any well subject to Commission jurisdiction for which the surface location is not in or on inland or coastal waters.

  (7) Offshore well--Any well subject to Commission jurisdiction for which the surface location is on state lands in or on the Gulf of Mexico, that is not a bay well.

  (8) Officers and owners--Any persons owning or controlling an organization including officers, directors, general partners, sole proprietors, owners of more than 25% ownership interest, any trustee of an organization, and any person determined by a final judgment or final administrative order to have exercised control over the organization.

  (9) Letter of credit--An irrevocable letter of credit issued:

    (A) on a Commission-approved form;

    (B) by and drawn on a third party bank authorized under state or federal law to do business in Texas; and

    (C) renewed and continued in effect until the conditions of the letter of credit have been met or its release is approved by the Commission or its authorized delegate.

  (10) Bond--A surety instrument issued:

    (A) on a Commission-approved form;

    (B) by and drawn on a third party corporate surety authorized under state law to issue surety bonds in Texas; and

    (C) renewed and continued in effect until the conditions of the bond have been met or its release is approved by the Commission or its authorized delegate.

  (11) Well-specific plugging insurance policy--An insurance policy that:

    (A) is approved by the Texas Department of Insurance;

    (B) is issued by an insurer authorized under state law to issue a well-specific plugging insurance policy in Texas;

    (C) names the Commission as the owner and contingent beneficiary of the policy;

    (D) names a primary beneficiary who agrees to plug the specified well bore;

    (E) is fully prepaid and cannot be canceled or surrendered;

    (F) provides that the policy continues in effect until the well bore has been plugged as required by the Commission;

    (G) provides that benefits will be paid when, but not before, the specified well bore has been plugged; and

    (H) provides that benefits that will equal or exceed:

      (i) $2 per foot for each foot of well depth for land wells;

      (ii) $60,000 for bay wells; or

      (iii) $100,000 for offshore wells.

  (12) Director--The director of the Commission's Oil and Gas Division or the director's delegate.

  (13) Escrow funds--Funds deposited with the Commission as part of an application for a plugging extension for an inactive land well.

  (14) Groundwater protection determination letter--A letter of determination stating the total depth of surface casing required for a well in accordance with Texas Natural Resources Code, §91.011.

(b) Filing fees. The following filing fees are required to be paid to the Railroad Commission.

  (1) With each application or materially amended application for a permit to drill, deepen, plug back, or reenter a well, the applicant shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of:

    (A) $200 if the proposed total depth of the well is 2,000 feet or less;

    (B) $225 if the proposed total depth of the well is greater than 2,000 feet but less than or equal to 4,000 feet;

    (C) $250 if the proposed total depth of the well is greater than 4,000 feet but less than or equal to 9,000 feet; or

    (D) $300 if the proposed total depth of the well is greater than 9,000 feet.

  (2) An application for a permit to drill, deepen, plug back, or reenter a well will be considered materially amended if the amendment is made for a purpose other than:

    (A) to add omitted required information;

    (B) to correct typographical errors; or

    (C) to correct clerical errors.

  (3) An applicant shall submit an additional nonrefundable fee of $150 when requesting that the Commission expedite the application for a permit to drill, deepen, plug back, or reenter a well.

  (4) With each individual application for an exception to any rule or rules in this chapter, the applicant shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of $150, except as provided in paragraph (5) of this subsection.

  (5) With each application for an exception to any rule or rules in this chapter that includes an exception to §3.37 of this title (relating to Statewide Spacing Rule) (Statewide Rule 37) or §3.38 of this title (relating to Well Densities) (Statewide Rule 38), the applicant shall submit a nonrefundable fee of $200.

  (6) With each application for an oil and gas waste disposal well permit, the applicant shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of $100 per well.

  (7) With each application for a fluid injection well permit, the applicant shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of $200 per well. Fluid injection well means any well used to inject fluid or gas into the ground in connection with the exploration or production of oil or gas other than an oil and gas waste disposal well.

  (8) With each application for a permit to discharge to surface water other than a permit for a discharge that meets national pollutant discharge elimination system (NPDES) requirements for agricultural or wildlife use, the applicant shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of $300.

  (9) If a certificate of compliance for an oil lease or gas well has been canceled for violation of one or more Commission rules, the operator shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of $300 for each severance or seal order issued for the well or lease before the Commission may reissue the certificate pursuant to §3.58 of this title (relating to Certificate of Compliance and Transportation Authority; Operator Reports) (Statewide Rule 58).

  (10) With each application for issuance, renewal, or material amendment of an oil and gas waste hauler's permit, the applicant shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of $100.

  (11) With each Natural Gas Policy Act (15 United States Code §§3301-3432) application, the applicant shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of $150.

  (12) Hazardous waste generation fee. A person who generates hazardous oil and gas waste, as that term is defined in §3.98 of this title (relating to Standards for Management of Hazardous Oil and Gas Waste), shall pay to the Commission the fees specified in §3.98(z).

  (13) Inactive well extension fee.

    (A) For each well identified by an operator in an application for a plugging extension based on the filing of an abeyance of plugging report on Commission Form W-3X, the operator must pay to the Commission a non-refundable fee of $100.

    (B) For each well identified by an operator in an application for a plugging extension based on the filing of a fluid level or hydraulic pressure test that is not otherwise required to be filed by the Commission, the operator must pay to the Commission a non-refundable fee of $50.

  (14) Groundwater protection determination letters.

    (A) With each individual request for a groundwater protection determination letter, the applicant shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of $100.

    (B) With each individual application for an expedited letter of determination stating the total depth of surface casing required for a well in accordance with Texas Natural Resources Code, §91.0115(b), the applicant shall submit to the Commission a nonrefundable fee of $75, in addition to the fee required by subparagraph (A) of this paragraph.

  (15) An operator must make a check or money order for any of the aforementioned fees payable to the Railroad Commission of Texas. If the check accompanying an application is not honored upon presentment, the Commission or its delegate may suspend or revoke the permit issued on the basis of that application, the allowable assigned, the exception to a statewide rule granted on the basis of the application, the certificate of compliance reissued, or the Natural Gas Policy Act category determination made on the basis of the application.

  (16) If an operator submits a check that is not honored on presentment, the operator shall, for a period of 24 months after the check was presented, submit any payments in the form of a credit card, cashier's check, or cash.

(c) Organization Report Fee. An organization report required by Texas Natural Resources Code, §91.142, shall be accompanied by a fee as follows:

  (1) for an operator of:

    (A) not more than 25 wells, $300;

    (B) more than 25 but not more than 100 wells, $500; or

    (C) more than 100 wells, $1,000;

  (2) for an operator of one or more natural gas pipelines, $225;

  (3) for an operator of one or more of the following service activities: pollution cleanup contractor; directional surveying; approved cementer for plugging wells; a cementer of casing strings or liners; or physically moving or storing crude or condensate, $300;

  (4) for an operator of one or more liquids pipelines, $625;

  (5) for an operator of all other service activities, or facilities, $500;

  (6) for an operator with multiple activities, a total fee equal to the sum of the separate fees applicable to each category of service activity, facility, pipeline, or number of wells operated shall be submitted, provided that the total fee for an operator of wells shall not exceed $1,125; and

  (7) for an entity not currently performing operations under the jurisdiction of the Commission, $300.

Cont'd...

Next Page

Link to Texas Secretary of State Home Page | link to Texas Register home page | link to Texas Administrative Code home page | link to Open Meetings home page