Under North Dakota law, the Board of University and School Lands (Board) is vested with the authority to manage state-owned minerals including the oil, gas, and related hydrocarbons within the beds of the State’s navigable waters.
The Sixty-Fifth Legislative Assembly's adoption of Senate Bill 2134 (SB 2134), codified as N.D.C.C. ch. 61-33.1, sought to establish state ownership of minerals below the ordinary high water mark of the historical Missouri riverbed channel (Historical OHWM) inundated by Pick-Sloan Missouri basin project dams. The bill directed the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) to procure a qualified engineering and surveying firm to conduct a review of the US Army Corp of Engineers (USACE) survey segments limited only to the corps survey segments from the northern boundary of the Fort Berthold Indian reservation to the southern border of Sections 33 and 34, Township 153 North, Range 102 West.
The Historical OHWM review as prepared by Wenck Associates, Inc. (Review) was presented to the North Dakota Industrial Commission (NDIC) on April 17, 2018. Thereafter, the NDIC issued its September 27, 2018 Order of the Commission, Order No. 29129, approving the Review. Information concerning the Review can be found on DMR’s website.
Senate Bill 2211 of the Sixty-Sixth Legislative Assembly amended N.D.C.C. ch. 61-33.1 relating to the ownership of mineral rights of land subject to inundation by Pick-Sloan Missouri basin project dams. Under N.D.C.C. § 61-33.1-03(8), the Board contracted with Kadrmas, Lee & Jackson, Inc. (KLJ) “to analyze the final review findings and determine the acreage on a quarter-quarter basis or government lot basis above and below the [Historical OHWM] as delineated by the final review findings of the industrial commission.”
On June 25, 2020, the Board adopted the acreage adjustment survey on a quarter-quarter basis or government lot basis above and below the ordinary high water mark as delineated by the final review findings of the NDIC except T152N R93W Section 10 Lot 6, Section 11 Lot 2 and T153N, R102W Sections 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 33, 34, and 36.
If you are an operator and have questions regarding the acreage adjustment survey please email email@example.com or call Minerals Director David Shipman at 701-328-1949.
If you are a private mineral owner and have questions regarding the acreage adjustment survey please contact your legal counsel or your operator.