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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 GarciaBiden pledges support for Texas amid recovery from winter storm Biden turns focus to winter storm with Texas trip K Street navigates virtual inauguration week MORE (D-Texas), Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulSenate Intelligence panel working on legislation around mandatory cyber breach notification McCarthy unveils House GOP task forces, chairs Republican, Democratic lawmakers urge fully funding US assistance to Israel MORE (R-Texas), Al GreenAlexander (Al) N. GreenBipartisan lawmakers call for action on anti-hate crime measures House Democrat sits on Capitol steps to protest extremist threat Biden pledges support for Texas amid recovery from winter storm MORE (D-Texas), Brian Babin (R-Texas), Kendra HornKendra Suzanne HornWhy does Rep. Johnson oppose NASA's commercial human landing system? The US's investment in AI is lagging, we have a chance to double it What should Biden do with NASA and the Artemis Program? MORE (D-Okla.), and Marc VeaseyMarc Allison VeaseyNew signs of progress emerge on police reform OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Native groups hope Haaland's historic confirmation comes with tribal wins | EPA asks court to nix Trump rule limiting GHG regs | Green group asks regulators to block use of utility customers' money for lobbying  Bipartisan lawmakers back carbon capture with new legislation  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.