Skip directly to content

State Land Office: Open For Business

on February 21, 2019 - 8:37am

Land Commissioner Stephanie Garcia Richard


  • February Lease Sales Generate Largest Bid Amount Ever For Open Lease 

SANTA FE – The State Land Office held its monthly online oil and gas lease sales, which garnered the largest open bid sale in history and generated more than $35 million for New Mexico schools, hospitals and colleges.

The open bid included 8,920.27 acres in Chaves, Lea and Eddy Counties and closed at over $12 million, more than double the previous record for an open bid.

The aggregate bid amounted to an average per-acre price of $3,961.25. 

“The Land Office is open for business, and our primary business is education funding,” Commissioner Stephanie Garcia Richard said of the monthly lease sale. “We are continuing to see the benefits in the Permian Basin, where we share the largest continuous source of oil with neighboring Texas. New Mexico has exceptional resources, and as a result our public schools today have $34 million more coming their way.”

Commissioner Garcia Richard said that as Land Commissioner, it is her constitutional obligation to raise funds for the beneficiaries.

“I will continue to do just that while ensuring we’re stewards of our land, water, air, and wildlife,” she said.

Total Amount Generated from Leases: 


Full Details of the February Land Lease Sale:

There were 41 tracts offered, 40 of which were sealed bid, for a total of 8920.27 acres, in Chaves, Lea and Eddy Counties. Eight tracts were withdrawn.

Total high bids: $35,335,421 from 12 different bidders, for an average per-acre price of $3,961.25. There were 37 registered bidders from 5 states.

Beneficiary earnings:

Common Schools = $34,862,341 Public Buildings = $376,320 New Mexico Military Institute = $56,000 New Mexico State University = $32,160 Charitable Penal Reform = $8,600

Oil, gas, and mineral production, ranching and farming, and commercial development on State Trust Lands support public schools, seven universities, New Mexico Military Institute, New Mexico School for the Deaf, New Mexico School for the Blind and Visually Impaired,  three hospitals, correctional facilities, water conservation projects, and public building construction and repair.

In fiscal year 2018, the State Land Office collected $852 million from lease payments, oil and gas lease sale earnings, rights-of-way, permits, interest, fees, and oil, gas, and mineral royalties.