New Mexico – The State Land Office has collected $90 million in revenues during the first quarter of this fiscal year, a decline of $104 million from the same period last year.
Despite the significant drop, Land Commissioner Patrick Lyons says he's optimistic because commodity prices for oil and natural gas are starting to strengthen and that could lead to improved revenues in future quarters.
The Land Office says royalty earnings totaled $18.5 million in July, $22 million in August and $24 million in September.
Monthly regular lease sales generated nearly $2.5 million in July and nearly $7 million in August, which was more than double the lease sales generated the previous August. September's lease sales topped out at $5.4 million.
The Land Office says royalties generated the bulk of mining revenues.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.