Chapter 78.16 RCW



78.16.010Leases authorized.
78.16.020Order for leaseTermsOption to purchase.
78.16.030Sale and conveyance.
78.16.040Option to surrender lands.
78.16.050Disposition of royalties and rentals.
78.16.060Surface rights.
78.16.070Damages to owner.

Leases authorized.

Whenever it shall appear to the board of county commissioners of any county in this state that it is for the best interests of said county and the taxing districts and the people thereof, that any mining claims, reserved mineral rights, or any other county owned or tax acquired property owned by the county, either absolutely or as trustee, should be leased for the purpose of exploration, development, and removal of any minerals, oil, gas and other petroleum products therefrom, said board of county commissioners is hereby authorized to enter into written leases, under the terms of which any county owned lands or county owned mineral rights, or reserved mineral rights, are leased for the aforementioned purpose, with or without an option to purchase. Any such lease shall be upon terms and conditions as said county commissioners may deem for the best interests of said county and the taxing districts, and as in this chapter provided, and may be for such primary term as said board may determine and as long thereafter as minerals, including oil, and/or gas, may be produced therefrom.
[ 1945 c 93 § 1; 1907 c 38 § 1; Rem. Supp. 1945 § 11312.]


Construction1945 c 93: "Chapter 38, Laws of 1907, is amended by adding a new section to be designated as section 8, to read as follows:
Section 8. Nothing herein contained is intended to or shall be construed as affecting any existing rights granted under chapter 38, Laws of 1907." [ 1945 c 93 § 6.]

Order for leaseTermsOption to purchase.

When said commissioners, in their discretion, decide to lease said claims or properties as provided in RCW 78.16.010, they shall enter an order to that effect upon their records and shall fix the duration and terms and conditions of said lease, and in case an option to purchase is given shall fix the purchase price, which shall not be less than the total amount of the taxes, interest and penalties due at the time the property was acquired by the county, and may provide that any royalties paid shall apply and be credited on the purchase price, and said lease or lease and option shall be signed and executed on behalf of said county by said commissioners, or a majority of them.
[ 1907 c 38 § 2; RRS § 11313.]

Sale and conveyance.

Upon payment of the full purchase price, in cases where an option to purchase is given, a conveyance shall be executed to the purchaser by the chair of the board of county commissioners. Such conveyance shall refer to the order of the board authorizing such leasing with the option to purchase, and shall be deemed to convey all the estate, right, title and interest of the county in and to the property sold; and such conveyance, when executed, shall be conclusive evidence of the regularity and validity of all proceedings hereunder.

Option to surrender lands.

The lessee under any such petroleum lease shall have the option of surrendering any of the lands included in said lease at any time, and shall thereby be relieved of all liability with respect to such lands except the payment of accrued royalties as provided in said lease. Upon such surrender, the lessee shall have the right for a period of one hundred twenty days following the date of such surrender, to remove all improvements placed by him or her on the lands which have been surrendered.
[ 2013 c 23 § 252; 1945 c 93 § 2; Rem. Supp. 1945 § 11314-1.]

Disposition of royalties and rentals.

Any royalties or rentals received by the said county under any lease entered into under the provisions of this chapter, shall be divided among the various taxing districts entitled thereto, in the same proportion and manner as the purchase money for said lands would have been divided in the event the said properties had been sold.
[ 1945 c 93 § 3; Rem. Supp. 1945 § 11314-2.]

Surface rights.

Nothing in this chapter contained shall be construed as giving the county commissioners the right to lease the surface rights of tax acquired property, except that the lease of any property as in this chapter provided shall give the lessee the right to use such portions of the surface on said land as may be necessary or desirable to it in its business.
[ 1945 c 93 § 4; Rem. Supp. 1945 § 11314-3.]

Damages to owner.

In the event said lease shall be for reserved mineral rights on lands previously sold by said county with mineral rights reserved, as provided in RCW 36.34.010, said lease shall contain a provision that no rights shall be exercised under said lease by the lessee, his or her heirs, executors, administrators, successors, or assigns, until provision has been made by the lessee, his or her heirs, executors, administrators, successors, or assigns to pay to the owner of the land upon which the rights reserved to the county are sought to be exercised, full payment for all damages to said owner by reason of entering upon said land; said rights to be determined as provided for in RCW 36.34.010: PROVIDED, HOWEVER, That in the event of litigation to determine such damage, the primary term of such lease shall be extended for a period equal to the time required for such litigation, but not to exceed three years.
[ 2000 c 11 § 20; 1945 c 93 § 5; Rem. Supp. 1945 § 11314-4.]