Gov. Dayton declares state of emergency due to propane shortage

Governor Mark Dayton  issued an emergency executive order declaring a peacetime state of emergency in Minnesota in response to a severe shortage of propane and other home heating fuel supplies statewide.

Already, Governor Dayton and his administration have taken the following actions to relieve the shortage:

•persuading the federal government and the State of Texas to waive shipping restrictions and increase the transport of propane supplies into Minnesota;

•helping eligible Minnesotans and families with the rising cost of propane; and 3) joining members of Minnesota’s Congressional Delegation in petitioning President Obama for additional emergency assistance and a halt to US propane exports.

Today, following discussions with Public Safety Commissioner Mona Dohmann, Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman, Agriculture Commissioner Dave Frederickson, and other top emergency management officials, Governor Dayton took the next step with the declaration.

Dayton will meet with propane industry suppliers to discuss the shortage and how to improve the supply of propane to Minnesota consumers.

Under the new state of emergency:

•The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM) will activate the Minnesota Emergency Operations Plan, coordinating response efforts across all agencies of state government and helping local governments respond and recover from the emergency;

•And the Adjutant General of Minnesota will order to state active duty such personnel and equipment of the military forces of the State as required, and for such a period of time as necessary to provide assistance and emergency relief services.

Emergency Executive Order 14-02, declaring a state of peacetime emergency in the State of Minnesota, can be found in full on the Governor’s website.

In addition to issuing today’s emergency executive order, Dayton has instructed the Commissioner of Commerce to use his consumer protection authority to help guard Minnesotans from potential price gouging activities.

Consumers who believe they may have been the victim of price gouging are encouraged to contact the Minnesota Department of Commerce’s Consumer Help Line at (651) 539-1500 or toll-free at (800) 657-3602.