BLM Behind In Permits

Buffalo, Wy – An earlier prediction that 3-thousand gas wells would be drilled in the Powder River Basin appears to be off base, but a Wyoming based Bureau of Land Management official says the effort should soon pick up steam. The B-L-M's Richard Zander blames some new paperwork and the lack of adequate staff for the slowdown and the reason that less then a thousand permits have been issued. But he is predicting that many more permits will be issued in the next couple of months to get the program on track. Zander admits that the industry has been uncomfortable with the pace of the permitting, but he also thinks they understand the problems and have remained patient.