The Clinton Administration is releasing 125-million dollars in federal funds to help poor families pay their heating bills — about a half-million of which is earmarked for Iowa. Fifth District Congressman Tom Latham says the money is much-needed, although he says it should have come sooner.Administration officials predict a stabilization of prices soon. Heating oil and gasoline prices are hitting highs not seen in nearly a decade. Latham says those federal funds are needed to offset bills for low-income & elderly Iowans.U-S Energy Secretary Bill Richardson does NOT want to release oil from the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve, saying it has only been used for “national supply emergencies.” Latham says Richardson’s decision might be a mistake.OPEC leaders are slated to meet next month to consider increasing oil production.
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