Name of student: Course: Tutor: Mineral Management Service in the Federal Department of the Interior Introduction The downfall of Mineral Management Services (MMS) perhaps illustrates the genuine incident of regulatory capture in the recent years…
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In fact, accusations of drug use and sexual misbehavior linking employees of Mineral Management Services and their industry counterparts expose actions that go beyond what is revealed in the agencies. An eye-opening series of report compiled in 2008 by the inspector general of the Department of the Interior exposed a shocking level of corruption that exist in the Minerals Management service (MMS) coupled with a cozy relationship between its employees and the Industry officials, that involves a high scale of culture of substance abuse and promiscuity within the agency (Abramowitz and Mufson, 2007). MMS is charged with the responsibility of collecting royalties from different companies, for these companies and to give them the right to produce and trade in oil and gas within the federal boundary. For instance, in the year 2007 alone, MMS collected a total of $9 billion from oil and gas royalties, and hence, this made this sector to be one of the chief springs of revenue for the United States. This agency in addition to that, also manages the Royalty-in Kind programs through its Denver office, via which it purchases the oil and gas from these energy firms and then resell it to refinery firms. In this office, based on the report, the inspector deduced that the officials of the MMS Royalty-in Kind program habitually guzzled alcohol at industry functions and even takes cocaine and marijuana. Worse of all, they had sexual relationships with these oil and gas representatives. According to the report, the Inspector general purport that more than a third of Royalty-in Kind officials were involved in taking bribes and gifts in exchange of contracts. This kind of messy arrangement and relationship cost a tax payer over$4 million dollar Literature Review According to the report written by Daniel Carpenter and David Moss, 2011, the disbanding of the Minerals Management Service, depicts how poorly the regulatory industry was functioning. The literature shows how this body was marred by rotten regulatory relationship, accusations in drug use and sexual misbehavior. Consequently, there was a proposal of disbanding of the agency by disintegrating and splitting its planning, revenue collection and regulatory role into three independent bodies of organizations. However, a keen evaluation of this step owing to the external political and social influence that at one time rocked the MMS operations, the reorganizations and reinvention will not automatically advance and develop how the federal or the government is managing the minerals within the federal boundary. Similarly, the memorandum report compiled in May 2010 briefing the outcome of the investigation that was done, probing the Lake Charles district office, one of the five major offices charged with the responsibility of overseeing gas and oil operations along the Gulf of Mexico. This report also revealed the level at which some of the MMS employees in the office collected gifts from offshore operators, ranging from lunches, admission to sport events to participation in events with some of the senior industry personnel. Besides accepting gifts, some MMS employees in senior posts particularly the inspectors permitted the some energy companies to fill out inspection forms by themselves and lastly, the report records a series of e-mail letters exchanged between the former inspector and a certain employee purportedly an offshore operator assuring him his job security at that company. This is because during this era, the inspector was mandated to
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