Rep. Maloney Reacts to Promotion of Official Responsible for Oil and Gas Royalty Rip-off
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Rep. Carolyn Maloney (NY-14) reacted to the Department of Interior’s announcement that an official who may be most responsible for costing the American taxpayers billions of dollars in oil and gas royalties will be promoted to a position that oversees private oil and gas exploration in federal waters nationwide.
On Monday, Minerals Management Service Director Johnnie Burton promoted Gulf regional director Chris Oynes, who signed 700 of the 1,100 1998-99 oil and gas leases with missing price thresholds that limit royalty relief, to MMS' associate director of the Offshore Minerals Management Program.
Maloney, who since 1996 has actively worked to ensure that taxpayers are paid their fair share of royalties for oil taken from Federal lands, said:
“It is completely ridiculous that MMS would take the person most likely responsible for the royalty rip-off and put him in charge of the whole show.
“This is just one more in a long line of actions showing that MMS sides with Big Oil over the American taxpayers. If it isn't the revolving door that brings oil and gas industry folks positions of power at MMS, then it’s the promotion of an insider responsible for one of the government’s costliest and most ridiculous missteps in recent history.”