U.S. Congressman Mike McIntyre is pushing two key policies to lower gas prices in addition to other efforts he is promoting to provide relief to businesses and families that are struggling to deal with rising gas prices.
Congressman McIntyre stated, "We must pursue every opportunity we can to address the high costs of gasoline. Everyone is feeling the pain at the pump, and we must work together to bring down the costs of gas!"
First, Congressman McIntyre is a cosponsor of the Gas Rebate Act, H.R. 4231. This bill would eliminate gas subsidies for oil companies and use the saved money to distribute rebates to individuals and businesses for each vehicle they own or lease, resulting in rebates of approximately $160 per vehicle. The proposal would inject the full $38.6 billion into the U.S. economy and help businesses and families offset the costs incurred at the pump from higher gas prices.
The five largest gas companies in the country combined to earn a record $137 billion in profits last year and at the same time collected approximately $4 billion in subsidies funded by American taxpayers.
Second, Congressman McIntyre has called on President Obama to release crude oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SRP) to prevent oil prices from spiking and help American consumers and our economy. Right now, the Strategic Petroleum Reserve holds approximately 696 million barrels and is filled to more than 95 percent of its capacity. The President has the authority to withdraw crude from the SPR under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, which would be distributed to refiners under competitive sale. In the letter to the President, which was cosigned by a bipartisan group of members of the House, McIntyre specifically references the proven track record of SPR releases resulting in lower prices at the pump. With the economy struggling to recover from the recession, releasing gallons from the SRP is an important step that needs to be taken to prevent an energy shock from stalling our economic progress.
These two actions build on previous efforts by Congressman McIntyre to lower the price of gasoline by expanding domestic production of energy. Congressman McIntyre has voted to approve the Keystone XL Pipeline to allow American refiners to take crude from Canada, increase our energy supply and lower the price of gasoline. Additionally, Congressman McIntyre has called upon the Administration to expand access to the Outer Continental Shelf for the production of oil and natural gas to further supply the energy sector with the access it needs to provide affordable energy to businesses and consumers.