- Associated Press - Friday, February 13, 2015

DENVER (AP) - Federal land managers say an auction of oil and gas leases on 22 parcels in Colorado netted more than $319,000.

The Bureau of Land Management said the leases sold Thursday covered more than 15,000 acres or about 24 square miles.

The highest per-acre cost was $120 on a Moffat County parcel. Williams Fork Land Co. of Craig purchased the 481-acre lease.

The state receives 49 percent of the proceeds of lease sales. The BLM says Colorado received more than $169 million in royalties, rentals and other payments from oil, gas and other minerals on federal land in fiscal 2014, which ended in September.

A lease is the first step toward drilling for oil and gas. Companies must perform planning and environmental analyses and public comment are gathered before drilling starts.

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