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WEST VIRGINIA CODE
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WVC 22 C- 9 - 8 §22C-9-8. Secondary recovery of oil; unit operations.
(a) Upon the application of any operator in a pool productive of oil the commission shall set a hearing and provide notice to all interested parties. Each notice shall describe the area for which an order is to be entered in recognizable, narrative terms; contain such other information as is essential to the giving of proper notice, including the time and date and place of a hearing. After the hearing, the commission may enter an order requiring the unit operation of such pool in connection with a program of secondary recovery of oil, and providing for the unitization of separately owned tracts and interests within such pool, but only after finding that:

(1) The order is reasonably necessary for the prevention of waste and the drilling of unnecessary wells;

(2) The proposed plan of secondary recovery will increase the ultimate recovery of oil from the pool to such an extent that the proposed secondary recovery operation will be economically feasible;

(3) The production of oil from the unitized pool can be allocated in such a manner as to ensure the recovery by all operators of their just and equitable share of such production; and

(4) The operators of at least three fourths of the acreage (calculating partial interests on a pro rata basis for operator interests on any parcel owned in common) and the royalty owners of at least three fourths of the acreage (calculating partial interests on a pro rata basis for royalty interests on any parcel owned in common) in such pool have approved the plan and terms of unit operation to be specified by the commission in its order, such approval to be evidenced by a written contract setting forth the terms of the unit operation and executed by said operators and said royalty owners, and filed with the commission. The order requiring such unit operation shall designate one operator in the pool as unit operator and shall also make provision for the proportionate allocation to all operators of the costs and expenses of the unit operation, including reasonable charges for supervision and interest on past-due accounts, which allocation shall be in the same proportion that the separately owned tracts share in the production of oil from the unit. In the absence of an agreement entered into by the operators and filed with the commission providing for sharing the costs of capital investment in wells and physical equipment, and intangible drilling costs, the commission shall provide by order for the sharing of such costs in the same proportion as the costs and expenses of the unit operation: Provided, That any operator who has not consented to the unitization shall not be required to contribute to the costs or expenses of the unit operation, or to the cost of capital investment in wells and physical equipment, and intangible drilling costs, except out of the proceeds from the sale of the production accruing to the interest of such operator: Provided, however, That no credit to the well costs shall be adjusted on the basis of less than the average well costs within the unitized area: Provided further, That no order entered under the provisions of this section requiring unit operation shall vary or alter any of the terms of any contract entered into by operators and royalty owners under the provisions of this section.

(5) The commission shall, within forty-five days after the filing of an application to establish unit operators for a pool subject to the provisions of this section, enter an order establishing such unit operators, dismiss the application, or for good cause, continue the application process.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2013 1st Special Session
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