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White House Opposes Oil Donations To Heating Fund

based on a report from Reuters. November 2, 2005

The Bush administration opposes a Republican proposal that oil companies voluntarily contribute some of their record profits to a federal fund that helps poor Americans pay winter heating bills, Energy Secretary Sam Bodman said on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Senate Finance Chairman Charles Grassley sent a letter to U.S. energy companies, urging them to donate 10 percent of their swelling profits to the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).

Asked by reporters if the administration supported the plan, Bodman responded: "No, sir. I wouldn't support it. It is similar to a tax."

Bodman made his remarks after addressing an energy industry group.

Last year, the LIHEAP program spent $2.2 billion to help poor and elderly Americans pay their winter heating bills. Democrats say the fund should be doubled for this winter.

Bodman also said the White House was considering a variety of proposals to address high energy prices, including federal funding for LIHEAP, more offshore oil drilling, and creating a U.S. natural gas reserve that would be "analogous to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve," as well as a stockpile of refined products. Announcements on such initiatives would be ready in "weeks," he said.

You have been reading "White House opposes oil donations to heating fund" from Reuters. You can see it in its original context here: tinyurl.com/9xmpp. Thanks to today.reuters.com.

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