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Kansas Gas Service Wants to Help You Save This Winter

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Kansas Gas Service Hosts McPherson Chamber Connection Nov. 30

By Brenna Eller

 

McPHERSON, Kan. — Kansas Gas Service hosted the Chamber Connection for the McPherson Chamber of Commerce on Thursday, Nov. 30. 

Katie Bowers, Kansas Gas Service Community Relations Manager from Manhattan shared that the communication team puts together a little over 1,000 weatherization kits and gives them out to communities each year.

The weatherization kits have an assortment of items from weather stripping for doors, foam gaskets to seal outlets and electrical switches, and a window film kit. According to Kansas Natural Gas, proper weatherization can reduce your heating costs by up to 10-15 percent, depending on the extent of improvement. The company provides some tips on their website to help lower your bill, such as replacing/cleaning your heater’s air filters, air sealing your home, and changing the rotation of your ceiling fans. 

Bowers said Kansas Natural Gas is the largest natural gas distribution facility in Kansas serving more than 647,000 customers in Kansas. In the McPherson area alone, the business serves over 6,000 customers. The service center is located west of town on Highway 56.

“From the service center, we are able to serve a total of 8,500 customers total in the surrounding area,” Bowers said.

One of the things Bowers loves about Kansas Gas Service is that they show they care about their employees and customers through prioritizing safety.

“That is something you are going to see across the board anytime we talk about ourselves,” Bowers said.

The Kansas Gas Service recently completed their annual United Way campaign where the employees and foundation pledged a little over $2,500 to the United Way of McPherson County.

“That’s a wonderful way we love to give back to our community to help,” Bowers said.

Operations Supervisor Brian Rush said the service area the company mostly reaches is from as far west as Geneseo, north to Lindsborg, east to Marion, and up north to the McPherson County line.

Nearly 187 million Americans utilize natural gas in various ways.

Next year, there will be another big group of meter replacements according to Rush for regular upgrades. Kansas Gas Service also locates their own lines, so if you are doing a dig in the area, call 8-1-1 to notify them.

Decrease in Natural Gas Bill graph
Lauren Clary shares a graph, showing an expected decrease in this winter’s natural gas bill compared to last year, according to the Energy Information Administration. (Photo by Rob Mackey)

Lauren Clary, Senior Market Development Representative (leading the company’s economic development efforts) and the previous Community Relations Area Manager showed a graph indicating a projected decrease in gas bills this winter compared to last winter, as reported by the Energy Information Administration (EIA).

“Natural gas is the primary heating fuel for 46 percent of U.S. homes according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2022 American Community Survey,” Clary said. “The retail price of natural gas and the amount of natural gas consumed determined how much consumers will pay. Last winter, residential retail prices of natural gas were higher than they have been in the previous ten winters.”

According to EIA, a benefit of using natural gas in your home is that heating with electricity will cost average US homeowners 77% more.

“We procure gas on behalf of our customers. What we pay is what you pay. We don’t mark it up,” Clary said. “We have a great system and a great team that works together to make sure that we can secure that price as low as possible so that we can keep it the most affordable.”

If you need financial assistance with a gas bill, always call first.  Rush said the last thing they want to do is shut anyone off.

“If you know somebody who is struggling, encourage them to call,” Clary said. “The last thing we want to do, as Brian said, is shut anybody off, so please call us. We have customer service; we have customer advisors. There are some dollars available and even if not, there’s ways we can help our customers.”

Kansas Gas Service was formed in 1997 when ONEOK, Inc. purchased natural gas assets from Western Resources. It is headquartered in Overland Park.

For more information, call 800-794-4780 or visit kansasgasservice.com.

Lane Introduced at Chamber 1130
Lane Gillespie (photo by Rob Mackey)

Some announcements were given at the Chamber Connection Thursday. Ad Astra Radio’s Casey Justus introduced the new Sports Director in McPherson, Lane Gillespie to the community. 

Lindsay Helms, from the McPherson Public Library announced that the library will be having Winter Wonderland on Dec. 9 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and on Dec. 11, the next trivia night will be “Merry Quizmas” from 6:30 to 7:30 at the McPherson American Legion. Helms will also be the 2025 McPherson County All Schools Day Chair, which Jennifer Bonham announced. 

The next Chamber Connection will be at the K-State Research and Extension Office at 600 W. Woodside.