Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release February 10, 2000


President Clinton today asked Energy Secretary Bill Richardson to take new measures to address the critical situation involving home heating oil, as well as longer-term action to avoid future problems. The President also directed Health and Human Services Secretary Donna E. Shalala to release an additional $130 million in Low Income Home Energy Assistance (LIHEAP) emergency funds for states, territories and tribes due to continuing increases in home heating fuel prices this winter.

"This Administration is deeply concerned about high oil prices and, in particular, home heating oil prices in the Northeast and New England," said Secretary Richardson. "While we can't control Mother Nature, we can form solutions to ease the burden on many Americans. Many industries are affected by the high prices, and we're concerned about all of them, but the actions we are taking today address those problems that directly affect the safety and health of Americans."

Health and Human Services Secretary Shalala said regarding the LIHEAP release, "The tremendous increases in fuel costs are putting vulnerable families, senior citizens, and children in serious jeopardy. These crucial funds will assure the health and safety of low income families."

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