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Terre Haute Public Works Board Approves Oil Drilling Lease

The approved lease establishes royalty payments between the city and Pioneer Oil, which plans to drill on Indiana University State's campus.

seismic testing truck

Photo: Jimmy Jenkins

A truck conducts seismic testing along the streets of Terre Haute.

Terre Haute‘s Board of Public Works approved Monday a lease agreement with Pioneer Oil Company, which plans to drill for oil on land owned by Indiana State University.

As the Tribune-Star reports, the lease outlines the financial details in the deal between Pioneer and the city of Terre Haute.

The lease, approved by the board without dissent, established royalty payments for the city equal to 15 percent of the gross sales proceeds actually received by Pioneer for the first 75,000 barrels of oil sold. It will be 19 percent for the next 50,000 barrels and 22 percent for all additional barrels, the lease states.

Leases must still be obtained from the university and other landowners in the area.

ISU began seismic testing last year to discover how much oil was available on the site, after trustees approved Pioneer to drill on the property.

Student groups have expressed concern over the project, specifically citing construction noise and pollution.

But ISU officials said the drilling will occur on the perimeters of campus and promised to shut down the project if it becomes disruptive.

Network Indiana contributed to this report.

Gretchen Frazee

Gretchen Frazee is a reporter/producer for WFIU and WTIU news. Prior to her current role, Frazee worked as the associate online content coordinator for WFIU/WTIU. She graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia where she studied multimedia journalism and anthropology. You can follow her on Twitter @gretchenfrazee.

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