Primary Member, State of Alaska, Royalty Policy Committee
John Crowther was named as a primary member of the Department of Interior’s Royalty Policy Committee, and as a member of this committee advises Secretary Zinke “on policy and strategies to improve management of the multi-billion dollar, federal and American Indian mineral revenue program.”
John Crowther is an Alaska political operative. He “holds a law degree from Georgetown University and once worked as an intern and aide for Sen. Lisa Murkowski” on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, where he worked from 2011-2012. He then worked for several years in the Alaska Department of Natural Resources’ Commissioner’s Office. In October 2017, Alaska Governor Bill Walker hired Crowther as “a new director of his Washington, D.C., office” “to push for new resource development opportunities under the administration of President Donald Trump.”
Sources: [Department of Interior, Press Release, 09/01/17, “Alaska politics roundup: High-card draws could decide Southeast elections, while Walker makes moves,” Alaska Dispatch News, 10/13/17, and Salary Data for John J. Crowther, Legistorm, accessed 09/19/17]
Since 2013, John Crowther has donated at least $1,150 to Alaska politicians, including contributions to Sean Parnell and Dan Sullivan.
[Search for John Crowther, State of Alaska Campaign Disclosure Reports, accessed 09/19/17]
John Crowther submitted a letter on behalf of Alaska’s Department of Natural Resources regarding the National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program for 2019-2024. The letter claimed that Alaska had a “significant” role in “supporting industry interest” and leasing in the Arctic Outer Continental Shelf.
John Crowther, on August 16, 2017, submitted a letter in the regulations.gov portal on behalf of Alaska’s Department of Natural Resources. The letter was to Kelly Hammerle, National Program Manager at Bureau of Ocean and Energy Management, and Crowther submitted the letter in the docket “Request for Information (RFI) and Comments on the National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program (National OCS Program) for 2019-2024.” The letter, written by DNR Commissioner Andrew Mack, argued that “Arctic offshore leasing [was] the first step towards realizing… potential to provide national energy and economic stimulus for the next generation of Alaskans.” Mack further argued that Alaska’s “role in supporting industry interest and leasing in [the Arctic Outer Continental Shelf] [was] so significant that the Governor nominated specific areas for inclusion and offer in BOEM’s prior leasing program to ensure that opportunities for future industry interest would be preserved.” [“Comment from John Crowther, State of Alaska, Department of Natural Resources,” Regulations.gov, 08/28/17, and Andrew Mack to Kelly Hammerle, 08/17/17]
Environmental groups have criticized the “new Outer Continental Shelf five-year oil and gas leasing program for 2019-2024,” saying that there is “‘no compelling reason to revisit the five-year program'” after the program was already “finalized in January” 2017 after “‘careful consideration of the economic and environmental realities of leasing and exploration of leasing on the Outer Continental Shelf and careful consideration of millions of public comments received.'” [Margaret Bauman, “GOP senators support new OCS leasing program,” Cordova Times, 07/27/17]
John Crowther has said he expects the industry representatives on the Royalty Policy Committee to be “‘useful movers.'”
In September 2017, John Crowther said that he “plans to draw on [Alaska’s] extensive experience to potentially address lease sales and royalty allocations on the federal level” for his work on the Royalty Policy Committee. He also said that he “expects industry representatives to be ‘useful movers’ on the committee.” [Andrew Westney, “House Dems Slam Energy Industry Influence On DOI Panel,” Law 360, 09/06/17]