Undervalued Coal Leases Cost Taxpayers Millions: Watchdog

Law360, New York (June 12, 2013, 4:02 PM EDT) -- Flaws in the U.S. Interior Department's coal leasing program may be costing taxpayers millions of dollars in royalty and bonus payments and hampering federal efforts to ensure coal companies are playing by the rules, an agency watchdog said Tuesday.

The DOI's Inspector General said the agency's Bureau of Land Management is using an improper formula to appraise the value of federal lands that are leased for coal mining — primarily in the Powder River Basin of Wyoming and other western states. That's cost taxpayers at least...
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