Average propane gas prices, according to a federal agency.

As Missourians continue to see a dramatic spike in their propane prices, Missouri’s U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill and Roy Blunt joined a bipartisan group of colleagues to demand President Obama facilitate regulatory relief to increase propane supply in areas with critical shortages—which would lower costs, as well as provide federal assistance to states and communities affected by the high prices.

“Homes, businesses, and farms desperately need propane, and the shortage threatens the safety of families and the financial stability of farms and businesses,” the senators wrote in their letter. “Thankfully, propane suppliers are already responding to market forces and taking extraordinary steps to increase supplies in hard-hit areas. Until propane stocks recover, the government should continue to provide and/or expand short term regulatory relief to incentivize these activities.”

According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), U.S. propane on hand has fallen far below the five-year seasonal average. The most recent EIA report indicates that propane totaled 24 million barrels lower than a year ago, a drop of 43.8 percent. As a result, in many areas propane prices have doubled, or even tripled, since October. More than 20 states have issued disaster declarations related to the shortage.

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