State Agency Agrees to Citizen Requests for Same Private Property Oil and Mineral Surveys It Provided Governor Brown

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Santa Monica, CA – The Department of Conservation says it will conduct geologic and resource surveys of Californians’ private property in response to citizen requests for the same information the agency provided Governor Jerry Brown.

Consumer Watchdog sent an email yesterday alerting the public of the gas and mineral survey provided to the Governor. Hundreds of Californians have submitted email requests to obtain the same information about their property to Oil and Gas Supervisor Steve Bohlen, who handled the Governor’s request. The Department of Conservation has responded by email to those individual requests.

Californians can submit their own request via email at Consumer Watchdog's new project,

Government ethics experts have questioned whether state resources were being misused to comply with the governor’s personal request. Multiple experts questioned by the news media, including industry executives and former regulators, say such mapping is never done for private individuals.

"Either the Department of Conservation has always honored private requests for oil and mineral surveys of citizens' private property, or it is honoring them now in light of questions about its' action on behalf of the Governor. Either way, Californians can now obtain their own free map, geologic history, and assessment of the drilling and mining potential of their private land,” said Carmen Balber, executive director of Consumer Watchdog.

The Associated Press has reported a whistleblower complaint was filed by an employee of the Department of Conservation who says she was retaliated against after complaining that doing the personal work for the Governor was improper.

The Department of Conservation provided an assessment of the oil, gas and mineral history of the Governor’s property and any future drilling and mining potential. They also provided a personalized satellite-imaged geological and oil and gas map, and copies of other records held by the agency about the land.

Read more about the survey and Brown:

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Carmen Balber
Carmen Balber
Consumer Watchdog executive director Carmen Balber has been with the organization for nearly two decades. She spent four years directing the group’s Washington, D.C. office where she advocated for key health insurance market reforms that were ultimately enacted into law as part of the Affordable Care Act.

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