AUGUSTA (AP) — Administrators who oversee Maine’s fuel assistance program are keeping a close watch on the troubles some oil companies are experiencing this winter.

The program, known as LIHEAP, usually pre-pays for deliveries to its clients. Administrators say they are now trying to recoup taxpayer dollars that were paid for oil that was not delivered.

For example, Thibeault Energy in Brunswick supplied oil to about 40 LIHEAP clients. The company recently closed, leaving an apology message on the answering machine. WCSH-TV reports the agency is now trying to determine how much oil was actually delivered and how much the company owes.

Administrators say last year, six companies that LIHEAP paid $366,000 to ran into trouble.

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