Federal energy assistance help, hotlines established

By KBJR News 1

January 30, 2014 Updated Jan 30, 2014 at 11:28 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) - Efforts are underway to get more propane flowing to Minnesota and money to help pay for it is already pouring into the state.

Here are the latest developments:

Minnesota will receive an additional $15.8 million in federal dollars for its Energy Assistance Program. The state program helps low-income homeowners and renters pay heating bills.

Governor Mark Dayton is holding an emergency meeting Friday with the state's executive council to extend his declaration of a Peacetime State of Emergency due to the shortage.

Dayton and several other Midwest Governors spoke with Texas Governor Rick Perry who today agreed to extend his waiver on trucking restrictions which has helped increase the flow of propane north.

"We're at a crisis point our supplies are very thin, and the ability for trucks to go down and bring supplies back up from Texas is making a huge difference in Minnesota," Gov. Dayton said on a Thursday conference call.

US Senator Al Franken has also written letters urging BNSF and Canadian Pacific railway companies to increase propane shipments to Minnesota.

If you have propane issues or questions both Minnesota and Wisconsin Minnesota's have setup hotlines.

Minnesota: 1 (800) 657-3504
Wisconsin 1 (866) 432-8947

Written for the web by Michelle Lee
mlee@kbjr.com