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Relating to the regulation of oil and gas waste; imposing a fee.
Estimated two-year net impact to general revenue related funds for HB 4442, Committee Report 1st House, substituted: an impact of $0 through the biennium ending August 31, 2023. However, the bill would have a positive impact of $9,180,122 to General Revenue-Dedicated Oil and Gas Regulation and Cleanup Account No. 5155 in the 2022-2023 biennium. The bill would make no appropriation but could provide the legal basis for an appropriation of funds to implement the provisions of the bill.
HB 4442 requires that an applicant submit an fee of $200 for any well utilizing a reserve pit for disposal of oil field wastes on the well site. This bill would direct a program for oil and gas waste reduction incentives towards solids control equipment and closed-loop drilling systems. Under this bill, the Railroad Commission of Texas would be required to adopt a rule mandating a notice for noncommercial surface disposal. "Noncommercial surface disposal" means the disposal of oil and gas waste at a facility for which such disposal is not a primary business purpose or is performed without compensation. HB 4442 would require oil and gas well operators to keep a record of the volume and type of oil and gas waste generated and how it's disposed of.
Texas Action opposes HB 4442 which is inconsistent with limited government as it would create increased new regulation of dubious value and impose a fee that would use the permit application process as an ATM of sorts to extract millions of dollars annually in fees from applicants.