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Tyler County Booster - Local News

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Why do gasoline prices vary so much from town to town?

Tyler County Booster

Tyler County residents are feeling the “pain at the pump” due to higher and higher gas prices. With the current economic times, everything purchased from milk to gasoline is under scrutiny. Bryan Chambers of Colmesneil asked, “Why do we as a community pay on average, 15 to 20 cents per gallon more than Beaumont, Lumberton, Kountze, and Warren? This is always the case and it has been an average of 30 cents in the last week alone!” There is a website keeping track of gas prices in Texas, hour by hour at www.texasgasprices.com. The Booster tracked prices Memorial Day at Exxon stations along Hwy. 69 and found: Lumberton Exxon $3.53, Kountze Exxon $3.55, Warren Exxon $3.57, Woodville Exxon $3.73 and Colmesneil Exxon $3.79. Other area gas prices are Lufkin Exxon $3.76, Jasper Exxon $3.79 and Livingston Exxon $3.59. A spokesperson from Exxon Mobile referred us to the American Petroleum Institute (API), saying Exxon does not set the prices at the pump. Chief Economist with API said, “Gas prices vary for three major reasons. One: taxes across state lines. Two: there are 10-12 different blends of gasoline and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) works with states and areas to determine what type of gasoline is required for their area in order to reduce pollution. For example, Louisiana requires a lower grade gas than East Texas, so the station owner’s cost per gallon is lower. The Dallas Forth Worth area is required to sell a higher grade gas than the East Texas area is required to sell. So this factor changes gas prices. Third, the cost of doing business for the individual gas station owners factor in to their choice for gas prices. Some of the owners have higher overhead or sell less gas, so they have to charge more than others who sell much higher volume and/or have lower overhead costs.” In the state of Texas, the current gas price average for Regular unleaded gasoline is $3.62 per gallon. The national average for the same gas is $3.78 per gallon, as of Wednesday, June 1.

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