Oregon Governor Joins fellow Democratic governors in renewing demand first made in April 2004
SALEM, Ore. – Governor Ted Kulongoski on Tuesday joined 17 fellow Democratic governors in calling on President Bush to work with Congress to lower record gas prices. Oregon currently has the sixth highest average gas prices in the nation, according to the AAA.
“Democratic governors have a history of standing up for consumers and are taking action to ease the pain at the pump,” the Governor wrote the president. “We are investigating price gouging, investing in alternative sources of energy, and rolling back oil and gas subsidies.”
The governors urged the president to endorse federal legislation defining and penalizing gas price gouging and ordering the Administration’s agencies to pursue anti-trust or commodity violations against companies engaged in gouging. Additionally, they called on the President to joint their efforts to press oil companies to invest their substantial profits in resolving refinery capacity issues that have become an annual foil for escalating prices.
“We support corporate profitability – but not on the backs of working families and not at the obscene levels we have seen in recent months,” the governors wrote. “Now is the time for action. Together, we can make America more prosperous, more secure, and less vulnerable to the pain at the pump.”
In Oregon, Governor Kulongoski continues to actively work on long-term solutions to skyrocketing gas prices by developing alternatives to foreign oil and encouraging conservation and efficiency. His biofuels package (HB 2210) remains on track to pass this legislative session, creating strong incentives for investment in development and production of alternative fuels and establishing a renewable fuel standard for the state. And under the Governor’s sustainability initiative, approximately a third of the state’s sedan fleet has been converted to hybrid or flex fuel vehicles that run on E-85 ethanol or compressed natural gas.
In addition, Governor Kulongoski looks forward to signing Senate Bill 118, sponsored by Attorney General Hardy Myers, granting the Governor authority to crack down on price gouging during periods of abnormal market disruption.
The seventeen governors who signed the letter are Govs. Kathleen Sebelius (Kan.), Joe Manchin (W.V.),Jon Corzine (N.J.), Jennifer Granholm (Mich.), Ed Rendell (Penn.), Bill Richardson (N.M.), Mike Beebe (Ark.), Janet Napolitano (Ariz.), Ruth Ann Minner (Del.), Rod Blagojevich (Ill.), Chet Culver (Iowa), Kathleen Blanco (La.), Deval Patrick (Mass.), Ted Strickland (Ohio), Ted Kulongoski (Ore.), Phil Bredesen (Tenn.), and Jim Doyle (Wis.).