The US Interior Department has estimated $14bn in revenue collections for the fiscal year 2010 from oil and gas leases, stemming from the latest increased fees.
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said that a new fee on non-producing Gulf of Mexico offshore oil and gas leases would raise revenue by requiring lease holders to pay $4 per acre when leases are in non-producing status.
Salazar also said that oil-and-gas fee reform, a new fee for offshore facility examination and an increased fee for processing onshore oil-and-gas applications will also influence 2010 revenue for the department.
The subcommittee hearing follows calls for oil-industry transformation and the proposal by congressional Democrats to increase fees on the oil-and-gas industry.
Democrats are recommending an 18.75% raise in the minimum royalty rate for onshore leases. The proposal would raise by 50% the present royalty rate of 12.5%.
Salazar said the department is reviewing current royalty policies.