Bipartisan lawmakers urge assistance for oil and gas workers

Bipartisan lawmakers urge assistance for oil and gas workers

A bipartisan group of lawmakers wrote to congressional leadership asking for assistance for oil and gas industry workers as oil prices have plunged amid the coronavirus pandemic and international disputes. 

“We write to ask you to help address the unique challenges facing the people who work in the U.S. oil and gas sector,” said the letter, which was signed by seven Democrats and two Republicans. 

“We know from previous economic aid efforts that any COVID-19 relief package must protect all hard-working Americans. The effects of COVID-19 will be felt across the economy,” it continued. 

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The lawmakers wrote that there have been layoffs in recent weeks linked to the decreasing fuel prices. A Texas oil regulator recently told Bloomberg that tens of thousands of people in the state were being laid off as drilling rigs close down.

“As various sector-specific proposals are considered to address the impacts of COVID-19, this sector and the people who work in it must be taken into account,” the legislators wrote. 

The letter was signed by Reps. Lizzie Fletcher (D-Texas), Xochitl Torres Small (D-N.M.), Vicente Gonzalez (D-Texas), Sylvia GarciaSylvia GarciaHispanic Caucus requests meeting with private detention center CEOs Hispanic Caucus asks Trump to rescind invitation to Mexican president 1 suspect dead, 1 arrested in disappearance of US soldier MORE (D-Texas), Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulChina must be held accountable for its egregious actions against Hong Kong Trump's WHO decision raises bipartisan concerns in House National security adviser says Trump was not briefed on bounty intelligence, condemns leaks MORE (R-Texas), Al GreenAlexander (Al) N. GreenThe Memo: Trump's race tactics fall flat Trump administration ending support for 7 Texas testing sites as coronavirus cases spike The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Miami mayor worries about suicide and domestic violence rise; Trump-governor debate intensifies MORE (D-Texas), Brian Babin (R-Texas), Kendra HornKendra Suzanne HornModerate House Democrats introduce bill aimed at stopping China from exploiting coronavirus pandemic House panel votes against curtailing Insurrection Act powers after heated debate Terry Neese, Stephanie Bice head to Oklahoma GOP runoff MORE (D-Okla.), and Marc VeaseyMarc Allison VeaseyChinese tech giants caught up in rising US-China tensions House members race to prepare for first-ever remote votes Hillicon Valley: Uber lays off 3,000 | FBI unlocks Pensacola shooter's phones | Lawmakers introduce bill restricting purchase of airline equipment from Chinese companies MORE (D-Texas.)

It comes as Congress weighs certain relief for oil and gas companies.

The Energy Department has asked Congress for $3 billion with which to purchase oil to be stored in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.