VIDEO RELEASE: Fuel Prices On The Rise, Voices From Virginia's 5th District
May 17, 2012 (Congressional Documents and Publications/ContentWorks via COMTEX) --
As I have traveled across the 5th District, I have talked with the people I represent. The top concern I have heard is that the high cost of fuel is crushing the Main Street business, crushing the farmer, and crushing the family that can't afford to fill up the gas tank to get to work or get the children to school. This is why those of us in the House of Representatives have fought for the last year for a common-sense domestic energy policy. One that looks for responsible ways to develop our domestic energy resources. A policy that will give us low and stable fuel prices, thousands of new jobs, and freedom from dependence on foreign dictators for our energy. We must lower fuel prices to rebuild our economy. We must lower fuel prices to strengthen the future for our children and grandchildren. We must adopt a common-sense energy policy now."- Robert Hurt (VA-5)
[Click above or HERE http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HNXhchDOC5Y&feature=g-all-u to view Robert's video]
Congressman Robert Hurt today released a video documenting a series of testimonies from 5th District small business owners during his recent district-wide tour. From Southside to Fluvanna, small business owners told their stories of how rising fuel prices are negatively impacting them. In the past three years, fuel prices have doubled in the absence of a responsible energy policy, and the Washington Post recently reported that prices have increased 20 percent from January to early April 2012, putting a tight squeeze on American families and small businesses, and leaving many across the 5th District hurting as Washington fails to enact common-sense solutions like the Keystone Pipeline.
But no empirical data will demonstrate just how tight the squeeze is until you speak with the families and small business owners who can tell you firsthand what price increases at the gas pumps mean for their production and for their livelihood. The below video echoes what recent news reports have told us - that the failure to increase domestic supply to meet domestic demands is taking the breath away from our families and small businesses both in the 5th District and across the country. You may watch Robert's video HERE http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/on-small-business/post/rising-gas-prices-crippling-small-businesses-on-a-variety-of-levels/2012/05/09/gIQAuqIlDU_blog.html.
House-passed Legislation Robert Has Supported To Reduce Rising Gas Prices:
H.R. 910 - Energy Tax Prevention Act: Robert cosponsored H.R. 910, which would permanently prohibits the Environmental Protection Agency from implementing a backdoor national energy tax that will raise gas prices for families and small businesses and destroy jobs.
H.R. 1230 - Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act: H.R. 1230 would expand American energy production, reduce gas prices, and create jobs by approving off-shore drilling permits in the Gulf of Mexico and off Virginia's coast that have been delayed or cancelled by the Obama Administration. There is bipartisan support for energy production off of Virginia's coast. According to a study by the Southeast Energy Alliance, offshore energy development in Virginia could create nearly 2,000 jobs in the state and produce more than a half billion barrels of oil and 2.5 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
H.R. 1231 - Reversing President Obama's Offshore Moratorium Act: H.R. 1231 would lift the President's ban on new offshore drilling by requiring the Administration to move forward on American energy production in areas containing the most oil and natural gas resources.
H.R. 3408 - The PIONEERS Act: H.R. 3408 would create over 1 million new American jobs and reduce gas prices by opening access to Virginia's energy resources and other energy resources across the country, including portions of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), and advancing construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline.
I'm John Gregory, Gregory Lumber
My name is Chad Shelton, I work with my dad on a logging operation, H.J. Shelton Logging
Hi, my name is Brad Rice, Rice Timber Solutions, LLC
Hi, I am Phyllis Mast and I run the Courthouse Cafe here in Buckingham, Virginia
My name's Binky Tapscott. I live in Fluvanna County. I'm the owner with my brother Troy of Tapscott Brothers Logging, Tapscott Brothers Trucking, Forest Pro, and Timber Bought Farms. Our biggest cost is fuel. Right now, compared to '09, our fuel is up right at 100%.
Robert Hurt: I think there's a lot of opportunity for us to adopt measures in Washington that would open up domestic supply of energy.
Chad Shelton: Fuel right now is our worst enemy. Our costs have just increased so much and actually our product prices have dropped, so we're fighting higher costs and lower prices.
Phyllis Mast: The economy's tough when the gas rises. And it also affects my grocery shopping, my bills go up, and the groceries go up, but I can't compensate for the price change.
Brad Rice: About five or six years ago, you could buy a tank of fuel, which consists of about 2,000 gallons for $800-$900. In today's economy, that same fuel would cost you somewhere around $9,000 or $10,000.
Binky Tapscott: It's nothing to pull into a fuel station and spend $1,200.
Phyllis Mast: Every time when the gas rises even $.10 - $.15 cents, it makes a drastic difference.
John Gregory: There's 40 families here that have got to live. And everyone of us is getting hit. It doesn't matter whether you use five gallons of gas a day or 5,000. It's still in proportion to what your paycheck is - and it hurts, no way around it.
Brad Rice: Our costs keep going up, up, up, and what we get for it at the gate or at the mill keeps coming down, down, down.
Binky Tapscott: It's hard to give employees raises, you know you're just trying to hang on, hoping that things will get better.
Chad Shelton: It's just only so much you can trim, we're already running lean.
Phyllis Mast: Everyone's money is going to gas.
Chad Shelton: Riding a sinking ship.
Phyllis Mast: It's just something I enjoy doing. And just, it's tough when you can't make ends meet.
John Gregory: I don't understand why we are not utilizing what is already available. We've got to do something. We've got to bring it back. We've got to keep it in the United States.
Robert Hurt: As I have traveled across the 5th District, I have talked with the people I represent. The top concern I have heard is that the high cost of fuel is crushing the Main Street business, crushing the farmer, and crushing the family that can't afford to fill up the gas tank to get to work or get the children to school. This is why those of us in the House of Representatives have fought for the last year for a common-sense domestic energy policy. One that looks for responsible ways to develop our domestic energy resources. A policy that will give us low and stable fuel prices, thousands of new jobs, and freedom from dependence on foreign dictators for our energy. We must lower fuel prices to rebuild our economy. We must lower fuel prices to strengthen the future for our children and grandchildren. We must adopt a common-sense energy policy now.
Read this original document at: http://hurt.house.gov/index.cfm/press-releases?ID=62d12d16-23cc-4200-b00c-f704e81c5538
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