VOLTAIRE McHenry County is a ways away from North Dakota's current high-level oil patch activity but reports of an oil well being drilled in southern McHenry County have been confirmed.
However, it will be several months before information about the well will be released.
Alison Ritter, public information officer for the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources in Bismarck, said Cambridge Production Inc. was issued a drilling permit on Nov. 1 for the Larson 1 well.
The site is east of Voltaire, or southeast of Velva, and it is a wildcat, or a well being drilled in an unexplored or unproven area.
Cambridge Production Inc. is a company based in Amarillo, Texas.
Both Betty Larson, of Voltaire, and Harry Bergstad, McHenry County commissioner, confirmed Wednesday that the company has been drilling at the site this month. Larson said she had little information about the well because of its status.
The company was issued a confidential permit, Ritter said.
State law is when an operator requests and is granted confidential (tight hole) status for a well, the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources cannot release information except operator name, well name, location, spacing or drilling unit description, spud date (when they commenced drilling) rig contractor and any production runs (oil sold) from the well. Information is kept confidential for not more than six months if requested by the operator in writing. The information also is not available to the mineral/surface owner.
The drilling start date for the Voltaire area well was Dec. 14, according to N.D. Oil and Gas Division information. The Oil and Gas Division regulates the drilling and production of oil and gas in North Dakota
Reports are the company has finished drilling.
According to the Mineral Resources Department, information about the well will be released in June.
In October, when Lynn Helms, director of the N.D. Department of Mineral Resources, gave a future projections report at the North Dakota Oil and Gas Producing Counties' annual meeting in Minot, he said, "We don't see a lot of drilling activity in McHenry County. It doesn't appear that the Bakken gets over there but there's oil in the lower Lodgepole in McHenry County."
Information was not available on the formation that the oil company working near Voltaire was setting its goals toward.
McHenry County Auditor Darlene Carpenter said there has been oil activity in the county about 20 years ago but that was in the northwest part.