Harsh winter weather severely affected several states and their heating fuel supplies. In response to requests for aid from these states, Dewhurst issued a temporary proclamation of a state of emergency. Texas law allows for the governor to issue such a proclamation. In doing so, it lifts several state-level regulations for shipping and transporting LPG through and from the state.
Dewhurst made the proclamation while Perry represented Texas, speaking at the World Economic Forum.
The weather caused a critical shortage and exponential increase in demand for heating fuels in many states. With a few weeks of winter still remaining, the harsh weather seems to be sticking around. Even parts of central and southern Texas saw high temperatures still below freezing, so far. Meteorologists predict at least one or two more surges of arctic weather are expected to spin-off of the "polar vortex".
Many followed the news in Atlanta, last week. Arctic cold temperatures mixed with a blast of very humid Atlantic air. This caused commuters to abandon their cars after being stranded in traffic on iced over and snow covered roads. Some motorists took nearly 24 hours to get a few miles to their homes. Others gave up and walked. Kids got stuck at school overnight. The political finger-pointing continues.
With more incidents expected and heating fuel shortages still affecting several states, Governor Rick Perry renewed the state of emergency for another 14 days. This temporary state of emergency will extend until approximately Feb. 19, 2014.
Governor Perry made the following statement regarding the renewal:
"As the severe winter storms have led to propane shortages around the nation, many states have been left without the vital resources required to provide heat and power to their communities. The State of Texas will continue doing what we can to help these families maintain heat and power for their homes and businesses."