After much debate, the House decided Tuesday to give the 2,100 residents of Panguitch a subsidy so a natural gas line can be extended to the small city.
Rep. Tom Hatch, R-Panguitch, said: "I stand before you asking for help, and that is appropriate."Hatch's bill would allocate $3.9 million to build the pipeline. The town's residents will pay a $30-a-month surcharge, on top of their regular gas bill, to pay back much of the money.
But Hatch said that other natural gas customers could ultimately pay $1.2 million to offset the cost of the line. On average, the increase in cost to other customers' bills will average only $1.41 annually. And that is OK, for just like city electrical customers who, over time, subsidized the electrification of rural Utah, so now other gas customers should help bring the advantages, the economic growth, of natural gas to all Utahns, Hatch said.