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Pence declares energy emergency over propane shortage

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Indiana Gov. Mike Pence declared an energy emergency Wednesday as he discussed his plans to help Hoosiers during the state’s propane shortage.

Almost 10 percent of state residents, about 500,000, use propane for residential heating, Pence said.

Pence suspended limits on loads for propane suppliers and directed state agencies to work with the Indiana Motor Truck Association to expedite permit applications and waive fees on overweight loads carrying propane.

“These actions will help propane suppliers run at full capacity,” Pence said.

The announcement was followed by the release of $5 million of Low Income Housing Energy Assistance Program funds. The funds will go to local service providers. The LIHEAP benefits for those in need will also increase from $400 to $550 through the end of March.

Pence also extended an emergency proclamation he made at the beginning of this month that lifts some restriction on the number of hours propane transporters can work. The extension will last until March 1.

The governor recently ordered roughly 575 light-duty Department of Transportation trucks to begin using alternate fuel to help conserve propane.

“They have been using unleaded gasoline since last week,” Pence said. “With the expectation of more winter weather around the corner, let me note that this change has no impact on our ability to keep our roads passable and clear snow as this difficult winter continues.”

Pence said that he was still looking to see if anything else could be done to help Hoosiers.

“Our administration is going to continue to pursue every avenue available to us to help Hoosiers through this severe shortage in propane during this difficult winter,” he said.

Pence also urged residents and businesses to do what they could to preserve propane, including turning down thermostats when they leave homes and buildings and using alternative fuel sources if possible. Pence asked for residents to help others when they could.

“I’m going to urge Hoosiers to do what Hoosiers do best. This is just the right time for us to come alongside our neighbors and friends who might be struggling with the high-energy costs or the shortages precipitated by the circumstances in the propane market,” Pence said.

Hoosiers concerned about price gouging by propane companies or broken contracts should call the attorney general’s office at 317-232-6201. Those in need of resources during the shortage can call 211.

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  • Capacity
    Good move... And, yes, these rules will allow suppliers to deliver more propane. If I have a truck that is, by law, limited to 75% of its total capacity, and that law is lifted, I'm able to carry, and deliver, 25% more propane in each truck. If drivers are allowed to work more hours, say 12 instead of 8, then I can have them out delivering 50% more time. Good moves.
  • Well here's some logic for Mr. Pence
    "'These actions will help propane suppliers run at full capacity,' Pence said." So, because of things like: 1) limiting the number of hours propane transporters can work and 2) permit applications required to transport propane, these suppliers have been running at less than full capacity to this point... leading to shortages. Hmmmmmmmm

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  1. So much for Eric Holder's conversation about race. If white people have got something to say, they get sued over it. Bottom line: white people have un-freer speech than others as a consequence of the misnamed "Civil rights laws."

  2. I agree, having seen three shows, that I was less than wowed. Disappointing!!

  3. Start drilling, start fracking, and start using our own energy. Other states have enriched their citizens and nearly elminated unemployment by using these resources that are on private land. If you are against the 'low prices' of discount stores, the best way to allow shoppers more choice is to empower them with better earnings. NOT through manipulated gov mandated min wage hikes, but better jobs and higher competitive pay. This would be direct result of using our own energy resources, yet Obama knows that Americans who arent dependent of gov welfare are much less likely to vote Dem, so he looks for ways to ensure America's decline and keep its citizens dependent of gov.

  4. Say It Loud, I'm Black and Ashamed: It's too bad that with certain "black" entertainment events, it seems violence and thuggery follows and the collateral damage that it leaves behinds continues to be a strain on the city in terms of people getting hurt, killed or becoming victims of crimes and/or stretching city resources. I remember shopping in the Meadows area years ago until violence and crime ended make most of the business pack you and leave as did with Lafayette Square and Washington Square. Over the past 10 to 12 years, I remember going to the Indiana Black Expo Soul Picnic in Washington Park. Violence, gang fights and homicides ended that. My great grandmother still bears the scares on her leg from when she was trampled by a group of thugs running from gun fire from a rival gang. With hundreds of police offices downtown still multiple shootings, people getting shot downtown during Black Expo. A number of people getting shots or murdered at black clubs around the city like Club Six on the west side, The Industry downtown, Jamal Tinsley's shot out in front of the Conrad, multiple fights and shootings at the skating rinks, shootings at Circle Center Mall and shooting and robberies and car jackings at Lafayette Mall. Shootings and gang violence and the State Fair. I can go on and on and on. Now Broad Ripple. (Shaking head side to side) Say It Loud, I'm Black and I'm Ashamed.

  5. Ballard Administration. Too funny. This is the least fiscally responsive administration I have ever seen. One thing this article failed to mention, is that the Hoosier State line delivers rail cars to the Amtrak Beech Grove maintenance facility for refurbishment. That's an economic development issue. And the jobs there are high-paying. That alone is worth the City's investment.

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