In the month of August, Americans paid a new record high for gasoline; an average of $3.72 a gallon. Over the past four years, gas prices have nearly doubled while jobs and the economy have remained stagnant or gotten worse. Instead of leadership on these important issues, the President has blamed others while making it harder to mine coal and extract U.S. oil. Instead, we need an aggressive “all of the above” energy plan to keep our gas and electricity prices low for working families and seniors and we need a reversal of this anti-coal policy to protect the jobs of Kentuckians all the while strengthening America’s energy independence. You have my word that I will continue to work towards energy solutions that will expand access to affordable American energy, and develop short and long-term solutions to our nation’s energy and fuel needs.
A few days ago, we reflected on the six month anniversary of the deadly tornado outbreak that swept through Kentucky on March 2, 2012. Every day, our small communities in eastern Kentucky go to work on rebuilding, recovering and restoring homes, businesses, schools, and churches. Last week, I had the privilege of joining Gov. Steve Beshear for a celebration of progress in West Liberty at the Conley Family Fish Fry, hosted by Morgan County Judge Executive Tim Conley. I shared a scripture from 2 Corinthians that best tells the spirit of Morgan Countians; they were "pressed, but not crushed; persecuted, not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed." Together, we are rebuilding homes, offices, and hope for our resilient people and I’m in awe of the selfless work that continues throughout our region.
Before the celebration, I visited the "Miracle on the Hill," West Liberty Elementary School. Thanks to the U.S. Library of Congress' Surplus Supply, I was able to present the students, Superintendent Deatrah Barnett and Principal Vickie Oldfield with more than 300 new library books. I hope the students will enjoy reading these fiction and non-fiction books, some authored by Kentuckians. I'm also collecting books for Magoffin County and plan to make another delivery very soon.
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