State holding onto money for electric bills - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

State holding onto money for electric bills

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - During 1 of its worst heat waves, the state of Texas is holding onto millions of dollars that was intended to help hundreds of thousands of elderly and poor residents pay their electric bills.

The Dallas Morning News reported Saturday that the state this fiscal year has collected $130 million designated to help offset the rise in electrical use. But it has provided only $28 million so far to those who need it, and without the assistance, some Texans do without air conditioning and risk their health.

Texas is spending only half as much as it did to help the poor and elderly survive the summer months a decade ago.

The reason: State lawmakers have locked away the money to deal with the budget shortfall.

Information from: The Dallas Morning News, http://www.dallasnews.com

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