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Newspaper Archive of
Golden Valley News
Beach, North Dakota
May 12, 2011     Golden Valley News
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May 12, 2011
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1858." Minnesota became the 32nd state in the United States 1949" Siam changed its name to Thailand. Inside Obituaries ii,...,..Page 2 Public noes ...,Page 4 News ...... , ........... Page S Graduates  ,,...,.Page 7 Classifieds  i L,...Page 15 Mineral owner suing over deductions By Richard Volesky, Editor/Reporter MEDORA - A mineral owner with interests in a natural gas field is suing several oil companies in a dis- pute over deductions from royalty payments. Herbert L. Meschke alleges that the companies for years have been making improper deductions from his royalty payments in the Big Stick Madison Unit, which is locat- ed in northern Billings County. Meschke, now of Minot, grew up on a ranch north of Medora, attended Belfield High School and is a former North Dakota Supreme Court jus- tice. Mechke's lawsuit in Southwest District Court alleges the deductions aren't allowed in the oil and gas leases that his parents, Gus and Dorothy, signed in 1972, which eventually allowed the exploration for oil and gas in that area. Herbert Meschke, his 'children, sister, nieces and nephews later inherited or were assigned royalty interests in the property. The Big Stick Madison Unit was created in 1987 when gas production from "the area was unitized through an agree- ment that was approved by the North Dakota Industrial Commission and the U.S. Department bf the Interior. The lawsuit also asks that the matter become a class action case to WnAI"S jtApp00tf!RG,00l Sales growth reported for most of region Billings County Historical Society meeting, Wednesday, May 18, at 5:30 p.m. in the court- house at Medora. Everyone wel- come. Students' spring program, Prairie School, Fairfield, 6:30 p.m., Thursday, May 19. Beach varsity high school track and field meet, 9:30 a.m., at Dickinson State University, May 14. Beach boys varsity golf meet at Washburn, 10:30 a.m., May 14. By Richard Volesky Editor/Reporter Taxable sales and purchases in the most of the region have once again grown. A May 4 report from the N.D. State Tax Department shows that taxable sales and purchases for the last three months of 2010 totaled $4.13 billion, up $983 million or 31.2 percent compared to the fourth quarter 2009. In the southwestern region, in Dunn County, where oil and gas r exploration is booming, the largest increase was posted, with figures nearly double that of the same qu.tlcer .of orte.,year ago. Golde n Valley County was the only coun- tY in the region to trave a decrease. Taxable sales and purchases per county for the fourth quarter of 2010, followed by the percentage of increase or decrease as com- pared to the same quarter of 2009 include: - Adams, $5.28 million, i0.8 percent - Billings, $2.2 million, 64.13 percent Bowman, $13.17 million, 15.02 percent Dunn, $8.12 million, 90.45 percent - Golden Valley, $4.03 million, - 11.l 5 percent - Hettinger, $3.26 million, 8.9 percent McKenzie, $24.3 million, 62.54 percent - Slope, 477,907, 15.54 percent - Stark, $159.44 million, 37.74 percent Statewide, for 2010, taxable sales and purchases were over $14 billion, growing 20.2 percent com- pared to 2009, according to the tax department. "This report shows that 2010 was another record-setting year for ..Norih Dakota," Cory Fong,c state tax commissioner, said in a " prepared statement. ,North Dakota's economy continues to flourish - our businesses are opti- mistic, oil-related activity is strong, our agriculture sector is healthy, manufacturing is upbeat, new housing starts are up, and our real estate market is robust." Wholesale trade showed the strongest overall growth in dollars, increasing by more than $956 mil- Sales (Continued on Page 16) Region 8 high school varsity track meet at Bowman, l I a.m., Mag ZI'. ........................... ............. Mobile Vet Center, a part of the Department of Veterans Affairs, will be in Beach at the La Playa. Mexican Restaurant park- ing lot, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., May 18. Event to reach 25th anniversary bring together all of the affected mineral owners in the gas produc- tion unit, which covers more than 20 sections of land, 24 oil and gas leas- es and more than 100 parties, according to court records. In May 2002, Whiting Oil and Gas Corporation acquired owner- ship of the working interests of the Big Stick Madison Unit, and Whiting began paying the royalties to the mineral owners. "In June of 2002, without notice to or consent from gas royalty hold- ers, defendant Whiting began deducting amounts it called 'GT' and 'Gathering Expenses' from gas royalties remitted," Meschke's law- suit alleges. Whiting hasn't respond- ed to requests to discontinue the deductions and to pay out previous deductions, according to the lawsuit. The lawsuit names additional companies as defendants: Bear Paw Energy L.L.C.; Oneok Field Services and related companies of Oneok L.L.C., and Headington Oil Company L.L.C. Bear Paw and Whiting in 2005 approved of a gas sales and purchase agreement, and in 2006, Bear Paw began paying gas royalties for Headington through Oneok Field Services, the lawsuit alleges. It's also alleged that in 2006, Bear Paw and Headington began making deductions termed "payee fees" from the royalties that were being remitted, and has not responded to requests to end the deductions or to pay out those previous deductions. The lawsuit asks for a full accounting from the companies involved, payment of the amounts deducted, and 18 percent annual interest on each underpayment more than 150 days old as required by state law. Whiting Oil' and Gas Corporation, through its Bismarck attorney, John Morrison, denied that the "gathering expenses" amounts were deducted by Whiting from pro- ceeds it received, and added that those amounts relate to what a gas Mineral (Continued on Page 16) Driller time This oil rig, located in eastern Golden Valley County, is one of two that have recently gone up in the county. There are a total of six permits open to drilling in the county, while there are 32 permits in Billings County, and 19 in Stark County. (Photo by Richard Volesky) MEDORA The Silver Anniversary of the Dakota Cowboy Poetry Gathering will be held May 28-29 at the Medora Community Center. The Memorial Day weekend celebration will begin at 1 p.m. on Saturday after the morning registra- tion and will run "open mic" both Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Two night shows will feature cowboy singer Pat Meade from Iowa, South Dakota poet Slim McNaught, Montana poet Jody Strand, and singers Bob Petermann and D.W. Groethe. Founder of the poetry gathering, poet and rancher, Bill Lowman, and the Radio Stars duo of Merrill Piepkorn and Loy Larson round out the Saturday The 7:30 p.m. Sunday night lineup includes poets Fran, Armstrong, Yvonne Hollenbeck and Jess Howard, along with cow- boy singers Audrey Wipperling, Paula Harkins, Lowell and Paul Larsen and The Wagoneers. The Sunday Morning Gospel, headed up by Rhonda and Bill Stearns, will run from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The annual photo show, coordi- nated by Kriss and Paula Enzi and Lyle Glass, will run concurrently in the Roosevelt Room, compliment- ed by a visual arts exhibit of sever- al of Bill Lowman's works. For more information, contact Bill Lowman at (701) 872-4746. 'American Idle' performers Beach students who were a part Of the comedy play, "American Idle, Murdering the Music," on May 1-2, pose for a photo, front row, from left, Becca Gunkle, Kelcee Dykins, Hannah Wegner, Allyssa Zook, Brittany Noll, Destiny Portanova, Brooke Davidson, Kaylene Kreitinger, Miranda Dietz; middle row, Owen Makelky, Austin Fulton, Mathew Gerving, Lucas Buchholz, Bobby Szudera, Kyle Bagley, and back row, Jared Kohanes, Landon Lechler, Jake Hardy and Lloyd Weinreis. (Courtesy Photo) Vacation Loans .. Are you planning a special vacation in Hawaii? Or maybe a leisurely fishing trip? If you need .. some extra cash, come in and see one of our loan officers about a vacation loan.  : First State Bank Beach 872-4444 Golva 872-3656 Medora 623-5000 24 hr. ATM in Beach & Medora lobby Medora Hours: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m Member FDIC