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Hughes, BDA, GPS guiding oil, gas companies our way
by Jeff Latcham
Oct 19, 2012 | 1419 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Beeville has been unusually blessed with a multitude of patron saints over the years – like the Dougherty and Joe Barnhart Foundations – and also with farsighted leaders who landed the naval base, the college, our water system and more.

In Dan A. Hughes, we get the benefit of both. His contributions of more than $1 million for runway improvements and the new Global Positioning System (GPS) at Chase Field are making the airfield top flight again, if you will.

A lifetime in the oil business has given Hughes clear insight into the long-term potential of the Eagle Ford Shale play. July’s latest numbers from the Railroad Commission show Karnes now leads the state in oil production with additional Eagle Ford counties Gonzales and LaSalle clocking in at fifth and ninth in the state. That’s with petroleum production just beginning to ramp up. And when it comes to Eagle Ford gas, we ain’t seen nothing yet.

In that, he sees the big advantage Chase Field’s 8,000-foot runway can provide; not only for his own corporate jet but those of others yet to come.

Companies, like ConocoPhillips with its own regional headquarters already in downtown Beeville, will need bases of operation for the Eagle Ford for years to come. Chase’s runway is the biggest between Corpus Christi and San Antonio.

Having the ability for oil executives to fly in and out on corporate jets without facing several hours of driving to reach regional field offices is a huge advantage to locating those offices. Having a GPS system to guide those jets in safely, when weather might otherwise prevent it, is a huge plus.

Bee County sits largely on the dry gas play of the Eagle Ford, so the drilling frenzy seen in counties north and west awaits higher gas prices. But there is already an active play in this for Beeville and Hughes’ assist to the Bee Development Authority and Chase Field has us very much in the game.

– Jeff Latcham
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