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Minn. House panel seeks relief to propane crisis

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - With Minnesota still in the throes of the coldest winter in 35 years, a state House committee is seeking solutions for a propane shortage affecting residents who use the fuel for heating.

An estimated 250,000 Minnesota households use propane to heat their homes, mostly in rural areas.

Shortages have spiked propane prices. Minnesota Commerce spokeswoman Anne O'Connor said Monday that the average cost of a gallon of propane has fallen to $3.27 a gallon. That's down from a peak of $4.67 gallon at the end of January, but still much higher than the $1.63 average per gallon a year ago.

A House commerce committee is considering one proposal that could be fast-tracked when the Legislature convenes on Tuesday.

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