The Permian Basin Royalty Trust (the “Trust”) is an express trust created under the laws of the state of Texas by the Permian Basin Royalty Trust Indenture (the “Trust Indenture”) entered into on November 3, 1980, between Southland Royalty Company (“Southland Royalty”) and The First National Bank of Fort Worth, as Trustee. Bank of America Private Wealth Management, a banking association organized under the laws of the United States, as the successor of The First National Bank of Fort Worth, is now the Trustee of the Trust. In 2007, the Bank of America private wealth management group officially became known as “U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management.” The legal entity that serves as Trustee of the Trust did not change, and references in this Form 10-K to U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management shall describe the legal entity Bank of America, N.A. The principal office of the Trust (sometimes referred to herein as the “Registrant”) is located at 901 Main Street, Dallas, Texas (telephone number (214) 209-2400).
On October 23, 1980, the stockholders of Southland Royalty approved and authorized that company’s conveyance of net overriding royalty interests (equivalent to net profits interests) to the Trust for the benefit of the stockholders of Southland Royalty of record at the close of business on the date of the conveyance consisting of a 75% net overriding royalty interest carved out of that company’s fee mineral interests in the Waddell Ranch properties in Crane County, Texas and a 95% net overriding royalty interest carved out of that company’s major producing royalty properties in Texas. The conveyance of these interests (the “Royalties”) was made on November 3, 1980, effective as to production from and after November 1, 1980 at 7:00 a.m. The properties and interests from which the Royalties were carved and which the Royalties now burden are collectively referred to herein as the “Underlying Properties.”
The function of the Trustee is to collect the income attributable to the Royalties, to pay all expenses and charges of the Trust, and then distribute the remaining available income to the Unit holders. The Trust is not empowered to carry on any business activity and has no employees, all administrative functions being performed by the Trustee.
The Royalties constitute the principal asset of the Trust and the beneficial interests in the Royalties are divided into that number of Units of Beneficial Interest (the “Units”) of the Trust equal to the number of shares of the common stock of Southland Royalty outstanding as of the close of business on November 3, 1980. Each stockholder of Southland Royalty of record at the close of business on November 3, 1980, received one Unit for each share of the common stock of Southland Royalty then held.
In 1985, Southland Royalty became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Burlington Northern Inc. (“BNI”). In 1988, BNI transferred its natural resource operations to Burlington Resources Inc. (“BRI”) as a result of which Southland Royalty became a wholly-owned indirect subsidiary of BRI. As a result of this transfer, Meridian Oil Inc., a Delaware corporation (“MOI”), which was the parent company of Southland Royalty, became a wholly owned direct subsidiary of BRI. Effective January 1, 1996, Southland Royalty was merged with and into MOI. As a result of this merger, the separate corporate existence of Southland Royalty ceased and MOI survived and succeeded to the ownership of all of the assets of Southland Royalty and assumed all of its rights, powers, privileges, liabilities and obligations. Effective July 11, 1996, MOI changed its name to Burlington Resources Oil & Gas Company, now Burlington Oil & Gas Company LP (“BROG”). Any reference to BROG hereafter for periods prior to the occurrence of the aforementioned name change or merger should, as applicable, be construed to be a reference to MOI or Southland Royalty. Further, BROG notified the Trust that, on February 14, 1997, the Texas Royalty properties that are subject to the Net Overriding Royalty Conveyance dated November 1, 1980 (“Texas Royalty Conveyance”), were sold to Riverhill Energy Corporation (“Riverhill Energy”) of Midland, Texas. Effective March 31, 2006, ConocoPhillips acquired BRI pursuant to a merger between BRI and a wholly-owned subsidiary of ConocoPhillips. As a result of this acquisition, BRI and BROG are both wholly-owned subsidiaries of ConocoPhillips.
The term “net proceeds” is used in the above described conveyance and means the excess of “gross proceeds” received by BROG during a particular period over “production costs” for such period. “Gross proceeds” means the amount received by BROG (or any subsequent owner of the Underlying Properties) from the sale of the production attributable to the Underlying Properties, subject to certain adjustments. “Production costs” means, generally, costs incurred on an accrual basis in operating the Underlying Properties, including both capital and non-capital costs; for example, development drilling, production and processing costs, applicable taxes, and operating charges. If production costs exceed gross proceeds in any month, the excess is recovered out of future gross proceeds prior to the making of further payment to the Trust, but the Trust is not liable for any production costs or liabilities attributable to these properties and interests or the minerals produced therefrom. If at any time the Trust receives more than the amount due from the Royalties, it shall not be obligated to return such overpayment, but the amounts payable to it for any subsequent period shall be reduced by such overpaid amount, plus interest, at a rate specified in the conveyance.
To the extent it has the legal right to do so, BROG is responsible for marketing the production from such properties and interests, either under existing sales contracts or under future arrangements at the best prices and on the best terms it shall deem reasonably obtainable in the circumstances. BROG also has the obligation to maintain books and records sufficient to determine the amounts payable to the Trustee. BROG, however, can sell its interests in the Underlying Properties.
Proceeds from production in the first month are generally received by BROG in the second month, the net proceeds attributable to the Royalties are paid by BROG to the Trustee in the third month and distribution by the Trustee to the Unit holders is made in the fourth month. The identity of Unit holders entitled to a distribution will generally be determined as of the last business day of each calendar month (the “monthly record date”). The amount of each monthly distribution will generally be determined and announced ten days before the monthly record date. Unit holders of record as of the monthly record date will be entitled to receive the calculated monthly distribution amount for each month on or before ten business days after the monthly record date. The aggregate monthly distribution amount is the excess of (i) net revenues from the Trust properties, plus any decrease in cash reserves previously established for contingent liabilities and any other cash receipts of the Trust over (ii) the expenses and payments of liabilities of the Trust plus any net increase in cash reserves for contingent liabilities.
Cash held by the Trustee as a reserve for liabilities or contingencies (which reserves may be established by the Trustee in its discretion) or pending distribution is placed, at the Trustee’s discretion, in obligations issued by (or unconditionally guaranteed by) the United States or any agency thereof, repurchase agreements secured by obligations issued by the United States or any agency thereof, or certificates of deposit of banks having a capital surplus and undivided profits in excess of $50,000,000, subject, in each case, to certain other qualifying conditions.
The income to the Trust attributable to the Royalties is not subject in material respects to seasonal factors nor in any manner related to or dependent upon patents, licenses, franchises or concessions. The Trust conducts no research activities. The Trust has no employees since all administrative functions are performed by the Trustee.
BROG has advised the Trustee that it believes that comparable revenues could be obtained in the event of a change in purchasers of production.
Widely Held Fixed Investment Trust Reporting Information
Some Trust Units are held by middlemen, as such term is broadly defined in U.S. Treasury Regulations (and includes custodians, nominees, certain joint owners, and brokers holding an interest for a custodian in street name, collectively referred to herein as “middlemen”). Therefore, the Trustee considers the Trust to be a non-mortgage widely held fixed investment trust (“WHFIT”) for U.S. federal income tax purposes. U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management, EIN: 56-0906609, 901 Main Street, 17th Floor, Dallas, Texas 75202, telephone number (214) 209-2400, is the representative of the Trust that will provide tax information in accordance with applicable U.S. Treasury Regulations governing the information reporting requirements of the Trust as a WHFIT. Tax information is also posted by the Trustee at www.pbt-permianbasintrust.com. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the middlemen holding Trust Units on behalf of Unit holders, and not the Trustee of the Trust, are solely responsible for complying with the information reporting requirements under the U.S. Treasury Regulations with respect to such Trust Units, including the issuance of IRS Forms 1099 and certain written tax statements. Unit holders whose Trust Units are held by middlemen should consult with such middlemen regarding the information that will be reported to them by the middlemen with respect to the Trust Units.