Quickies: Congress looks to cut heating assistance program for low-income families

* Congress considers cut to heating-assistance program for low-income families: Congress is considering a $1 billion cut to the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, which gave $4.7 billion to 9 million households last year. The North Dakota Department of Human Services says more than 16,000 North Dakotans benefit from the program.

* North Dakota cities top the charts of two American Lung Association’s surveys: Cleanest U.S. Cities for Ozone Air Pollution and Top 25 Cleanest U.S. Cities for Year-Round Particle Pollution. Those charts may be part of the reason the National Rural Electrical Cooperative Association is calling new guidelines from the Environmental Protection Agency “too hasty.” Co-ops fear they will have to pass the costs from the $10 billion final rule directly onto their consumers.

* Amid recession, consumers look to stretch their wallets by cutting energy. One quick fix? Unplug the gaming device Santa gave you… it’ll save $90+ per year.