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Blunt, McCaskill Call on President for Propane Price Relief

Propane tank
Photo Credit: Ty Konzk-Amarek via Flickr

The latest push to address the dramatic spike in propane prices comes from a bipartisan group of lawmakers, including Missouri’s two U.S. senators, urging President Obama to act.

Roy Blunt and Claire McCaskill were among over two dozen senators to recently issue a letter asking the President tofacilitate regulatory relief to increase propane supply in areas with critical shortages. Specifically, they are asking for action that will lower costs and provide federal assistance to states and communities affected by the high prices.

The most recent Energy Information Administration report indicates that propane stocks are 24 million barrels lower than a year ago, a drop of more than 43 percent. As a result, in many areas propane prices have doubled, or even tripled, since October.

A week ago, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon announced the release of another $14.9 million in federal funds through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, and pledged to double the amount that each household can receive for propane assistance.

“The additional propane dollars here are money we’re scraping out of federal dollar sources which won’t dramatically affect the state’s general revenue budget,” Nixon said during a visit to Springfield on Feb. 3.

An estimated 10 percent, or 245,000 Missouri households, rely on propane to heat their homes.

The state’s attorney general, Chris Koster, is also investigating the spike in prices.