WV residents learn about mineral rights at special meeting
MOUNDSVILLE, W.Va. —
West Virginia residents had the chance to learn about their mineral rights at a special meeting on Thursday at Grand Vue Park in Moundsville.
The meeting was presented by the National Association of Royalty Owners (NARO) and Gold, Khourey & Turak.
The goal of the meeting was to educate oil and gas royalty owners on what they need to do come tax time.
"People do not always realize that mineral rights and mineral interest that they own are taxable for property tax purposes. When they started receiving royalty payments, they knew they had to pay a federal income tax on the income, and a state income tax, but they didn't always realize that the mineral rights and royalties they receive are taxable for property tax purposes also,” said Chris Kessler, Marshall County assessor.
That means that when royalty owners get their house and vehicle property taxes, they will also get a bill for the mineral rights that they owe.
Assessments are determined by the state tax department.
Under the current law, assessments can vary from year to year, a fact that doesn’t sit well with Moundsville resident Roseanna Keller.
"The law seems very vague and unfair, but the only thing that is going to make the law change is if people organize and work together to make a fair law,” she said.
The oil and gas fields have grown over the last decade in Marshall County, rising from about 3,000 assessments to now more than 26,000.
That means a lot more people are affected, and the full house at the town hall illustrated that.
"It's exceptional that we are able to get this many people on a cold night like tonight in January. This is the first of five events we're having, the "Fuel Yourselves with Knowledge" series, so we're hoping this is the kickoff of a great series,” said Valerie Antonette, president of NARO Appalachia.
The next meeting will be held on Feb. 21 at 6:00 p.m. at the Wheeling Island Hotel Casino Racetrack.
If you missed Thursday’s meeting, or if you would like more information, call your county assessor.