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Interior Seeks $533,520 Penalty from Gas Developer

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CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — The Interior Department is seeking a more than half-million-dollar penalty against a gas developer that the agency says failed to report production on federal leases in northeast Wyoming.

Interior’s Office of Natural Resources Revenue announced the $533,520 civil penalty Thursday against Highland, Utah-based CEP M Purchase, LLC.

The agency says it sent a noncompliance notice to the company in April, 2013, and penalties will accrue until required reports are submitted. The company may request a hearing on the penalty.

CEP M Purchase is a subsidiary of Gillette-based High Plains Gas, which through CEP M Purchase has acquired hundreds of Powder River Basin coal-bed methane wells. Messages left with CEP M Purchase and High Plains Gas weren’t immediately returned Thursday.

Coal-bed methane production in the basin has declined significantly since 2010.

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