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Missouri lawmakers debate on the impact ethanol will have on Missouri drivers

April 5, 2006
By: Amy Becker
State Capital Bureau

Missouri lawmakers say they want to put Missouri on the map as a leader in ethanol production.

Amy Becker has more from the state Capitol.

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Representative Jim Avery says increasing the production of ethanol in Missouri would cause a decrease in ethanol prices and oil prices.

Avery says he wants to move back the introduction of ethanol into all forms of fuel from 2008 to 2011 so there is time to produce more ethanol to meet demands.

Representative Wes Shoemeyer says Missouri should not wait to end its dependence on Middle Eastern oil.
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Contents: These two years are important. WE need to move it on up and get it out there and become self reliant quicker.

Avery says ethanol based fuel will not only help consumers save at the pump, it will also boost Missouri agriculture.

From Jefferson City, I'm Amy Becker.

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The debate over ethanol in Missouri fuel heated in the state as lawmakers with questions of its impact on the economy.

Amy Becker reports from Jefferson City.

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Representative Ed Emory expressed his concerns over a bill that would increase the amount of ethanol in fuel by ten percent.

Emory says the bill is an attempt to replace capitalism with socialism.

Representative Robert Behnan defended the bill saying it affords consumer protection and would result in cheaper fuel.

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Contents: We're saying this is a top down, we're gonna sit up here and we're going to manage this economy and we've decided that the consumer really is better off with ethanol than he is without ethanol. We're going to set it up so that's the way it goes?

Currently Missouri is receiving $31 million in revenue from ethanol. If lawmakers pass the bill, revenue would increase to $63 million.

From the state Capitol, I'm Amy Becker.

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Missouri lawmakers questioned the impact ethanol might have on the price you pay at the pump.

Amy Becker has more from the state Capitol.

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Lawmakers are concerned an increase of ethanol in fuel to ten percent will have a negative affect on consumers.

Representative Robert Behnan says this is not the case

Behnan says if ethanol production is increased it will not only be cheap but will also drive down oil prices.

He says ethanol has always been cheaper than regular gasoline.

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Contents: I think the last six years gentlemen, 98% of the time, ethanol has been cheaper to use.

Behnan says many Missourians already unknowingly use ethanol and the increase would not be a dramatic change for drivers.

From the state Capitol, I'm Amy Becker.


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