Texas GOP congressman: Federal disaster aid will help homeowners with high utility bills

A Texas congressman said Sunday that homeowners in his state who are facing shockingly high electric payments and damage to their homes resulting from recent winter weather would be eligible for aid from the federal government.

Speaking on CNN's "State of the Union," Rep. Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulOvernight Defense: Biden sends message with Syria airstrike | US intel points to Saudi crown prince in Khashoggi killing | Pentagon launches civilian-led sexual assault commission Lawmakers line up behind potential cyber breach notification legislation Biden signs supply chain order after 'positive' meeting with lawmakers MORE (R-Texas) thanked President BidenJoe BidenHouse Democrats pass sweeping .9T COVID-19 relief bill with minimum wage hike Biden to hold virtual bilateral meeting with Mexican president More than 300 charged in connection to Capitol riot MORE for approving an emergency disaster declaration for the state, and pointed to that declaration when asked by host Dana BashDana BashTexas Republican criticizes Cruz for Cancun trip: 'When a crisis hits my state, I'm there' Fauci: 'Possible' Americans will need to wear masks into 2022 Progressive caucus chair: I think minimum wage will be included in COVID-19 aid package MORE about reports of Texans facing massive utility bills following days of blackouts and water outages across Texas.

"Yeah, that's the current plan, is that the federal assistance will help homeowners, both with the repair...and with the utilities' cost," McCaul told CNN.

His comments came in response to reports of Texans facing electricity bills as high as $17,000 resulting from massive demand and low supply over the past week.

McCaul on Sunday went on to add that it was an interesting "paradox" to see Texas, which provides much of the U.S.'s annual energy output, unable to power its own grid.

The Republican also agreed with Bash that the storm was an eye-opening example as to how man-made climate change could seriously affect Texas, adding that he has called for a "Manhattan-style project" focusing on technology addressing climate change.

Much of Texas was blanketed with snow and ice early last week in a devastating winter storm that froze machinery at natural gas plants and other power facilities in the state, leaving millions without electricity or running water as freezing temperatures persisted for days.

As many as 50 people have died as a result of the winter storm and Texas officials now face scrutiny over why the state was not better prepared for the disaster.