Justia Mississippi Supreme Court Opinion Summaries

Articles Posted in Energy, Oil & Gas Law
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Anadarko Petroleum Corporation petitioned the Mississippi State Oil and Gas Board to determine the propriety of costs that Kelly Oil Company was attempting to charge to Anadarko as a nonconsenting owner in a force-integrated drilling unit. The Board determined that all costs Kelly Oil was attempting to charge were properly chargeable. The chancery court affirmed the Board's order, and Anadarko appealed. Because the Board's order contained insufficient reasoning and findings of fact for the Supreme Court to conduct an adequate review, the Court vacated the Board's order and remanded the case for further proceedings. View "Anadarko Petroleum Corporation v. State Oil & Gas Board of Mississippi" on Justia Law

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The Pascagoula School District (which contains a Chevron crude oil refinery and a Gulf liquified natural gas terminal) brought suit, seeking a declaration that a new law that mandated that revenue the District collected from ad valorem taxes levied on liquified natural gas terminals and crude oil refineries be distributed to all school districts in the county where the terminals and refineries were located was unconstitutional and requesting injunctive relief. All parties filed for summary judgment. After a hearing, the trial judge ruled that the law was constitutional, and the plaintiffs appealed that decision. Because the Supreme Court found the contested statute violated the constitutional mandate that a school district's taxes be used to maintain "its schools," it reversed and remanded the case for further proceedings. View "Pascagoula School District v. Tucker" on Justia Law

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The central issue in this case was whether an oil company could deduct reasonable processing and investment costs from the payments it made to royalty owners. If so, the Supreme Court had to determine whether Mississippi code 53-3-39 was applicable in calculating the damages owed to the royalty owners for unreasonable deductions. Upon review, the Supreme Court affirmed the chancellor's holding that reasonable processing and investment costs could be deducted from royalty owners' payments. However, the Court determined that the chancellor erred by failing to apply 53-3-39 to calculate damages. Thus, the Court partly affirmed, partly reversed the chancellor's decision, and remanded the case for recalculation of damages. View "Pursue Energy Corporation v. Abernathy" on Justia Law