Media Contact: Tozier - Int. 4306 | Information Service
For Immediate Release: July 30, 1959

Acting Secretary of the Interior Elmer F. Bennett today called attention to the results of the first sale of oil and gas leases held by the Bureau of Indian Affairs on the basis of a fixed bonus of $500 per acre and competitive bidding on the royalty rates. The bids were opened at Window Rock, Arizona, July 28. The total bonus offered at $500 per acre was $1,245,500.

The land offered for lease comprises 3,291 acres in San Juan County, Utah, in the "four corners" area, and is the subject of litigation between the United States, as trustee for the Navajo Tribe, and the State of Utah. Bidders were warned in advance that the tracts were being offered "without any warranty or representation of good title and subject to acceptance by the duly authorized tribal representatives.”

Acceptable bids were received on 16 tracts totaling 2,491 acres. The highest per-acre royalty bid on one of the tracts was 77.19 percent. The average royalty bid per-acre was 48.3 percent and per-tract 46.99 percent.

Final action has not yet been taken on the bids received.