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Saturday, December 1, 2012



This was the topic discussed Thursday (Nov. 29th) through presentations followed by a question-and-answer period at a meeting held in Coudersport.  The speakers during the first half of the meeting were Dan Brockett and Jon Laughner , both Penn State Extension Specialists on multiple matters relating to this region’s conventional drilling and unconventional shale plays. 
 Oil and natural gas production and storage have played  major roles in the area’s economic ups and downs in NY and PA for many years.   Leases that were signed decades ago haunt many today because the clauses were few and heavily industry friendly.  Signers had little leverage then to bargain for something better.  That is not true today for those who “play their cards right”.  Negotiating a solid lease that fairly benefits both drillers and rights owners can be likened to a poker game.  Some players are better than others.
Companies holding old leases recognize that today’s circumstances, i.e. the technology that has made gas drilling profitable at many levels, now require new wordage be added to those older documents. They may be called extensions, amendments, whatever … but what these changes mean to the owners that “the companies want more from them”.  The reasons can be many, may be logical, but ask yourself …
Are they more interested in making money for you or  themselves?
 The first option any rights owner, any storage lease or pipeline lease holder has is  don’t sign,  don’t sign.  In knowledge there is power … in numbers there is strength, and people need more in their corner than the information companies put in front of them.  Enter educators and attorneys focused on gas/oil matters @ the top of their game.!

The second portion of Nov. 29th’s meeting was led by gas/oil attorneys from MacDonald Illig Law Offices. Tom Pendleton and Bob Gandley who have successfully addressed leasing matters on local and state levels for individuals, business entities and others, joined in with the Penn State team to cover some of the details involved when companies step back into the lives of leased individuals.  Their message echoed that of PSU speakers and went further.  Situations regarding unitization in unconventional shale, division orders, and re-certification of titles, leases that allow for owners auditing company books were all discussed.  Primary leases, secondary leases and tenancy-at-will also were a part of the presentation.
The audience was not large but the members posed high caliber questions that the speakers were able to respond to in easily understandable terms.  Leasing experiences have and will vary for many reasons … the geology, the markets, the infrastructure, timing, and individuals willingness to learn what the whole process is about are major ones.  Politics are in the picture too.
All in attendance received a great deal of printed material, verbal information, and had numerous questions answered.

** Personal note: So much of what is happening in all shale plays is under the radar.  I believe the same as the speakers … common sense, expanded knowledge, and strength in numbers must be on-going activities if our states are to make the most of our natural resources and protect the environment at the same time.  For anyone unable to attend this meeting, do yourself a favor and make every effort to sit in on any and all future meetings regarding this region’s shale play and all manner of leases … relatively recent ones to those signed generations ago.
Many thanks and appreciation to all those news outlets who announced this latest meeting on leases.  Two more presentations are up-coming, not by Penn State or MacDonald Illig but by the 4-County Leasing Group and CX-Energy.  Some of the same information and printed materials will be covered along with expanded focus on leasing for new-comers and those whose leases will expire in 2013.  Our goal is to present gas/oil companies with the largest contiguous land masses for leasing that we can achieve across Potter and McKean in PA, and Cattaraugus and Allegany in NY.  Our growth and that of expanding infrastructure in both states is a positive indication of what is to come. Interest in learning more about leasing hasn’t stopped growing.  The public is invited to the next meetings, because it is the audience members who choose to become a part of this leasing experience that have a major impact on its success.
MONDAY   December 3rd   6:30 PM    American Legion   417 W. Main St.  Smethport, PA
TUESDAY   December 4th    6:30 PM   American Legion    Cattaraugus Rd.   Little Valley, NY
---  Of all the states in the Marcellus/Utica plays, PA has the highest rate of return $$$ … this from PSU’s speaker, Dan Brockett.  New York has the resources to reach that same level, and major companies realized that when they began to set the stage with early leases, and today’s infrastructure growth.  Millions are not spent unless billions are expected in return.
Those missing out on the November 29th meeting have the opportunity to attend one of the December meetings.

Janice L. Hancharick
4-County Leasing Group
E-mail: jlhanch@nc.rr.com

1 comment :

Anonymous said...

Now this takes the cake!
What Janice never reports on is the folly of contracting with a middle man (in this case, her!) to try to broker your leasing. And the meetings she announces here has NOTHING to do with the actual public meeting that was held this week.
The meeting this week was not a sales pitch, but the ones she is scheduling certainly are.
Sleight of hand indeed and quit hanus at that.