Georgia gas prices climb quicker than others - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Georgia gas prices climb quicker than others

August 17, 2005

Cordele- It's the same complaint from drivers at the pump.

"Yeah, It's a bit costly," said Chad Adkins, Cordele.

"I think it shouldn't have went up so quick, I mean it's hard on the middle class people," said Tim Graham, Cordele.

Gasoline prices are a direct result of crude oil prices, which recently were driven by the futures market.

"There's no windfall or profits for convenience store or gasoline owners right now as a lot of people believe, but you've got to point the finger at someone and it's been pointing in the wrong direction lately," said Brian Watson, of Brian's Lube and Tire.

The price we pay in Georgia has climbed drastically. According to AAA, we now pay more than any southern state other than Florida. Many states just charge a flat per gallon tax. Georgia has the lowest gasoline excise tax in country, but we pay four percent in sales tax. That means, when the price of gas goes way up, so does the amount we pay in tax on gas.

"After federal and state taxes if cost me $2.51 to put it in the ground, my price on my sign $2.57, I make six cents a gallon," said Watson.

A change in Georgia could mean some savings. "Possibly restructure the tax, the way the tax is collected in the state of Georgia, to give some relief to some of the people like us that are in small business," said Watson.

State legislators say the sales tax pays for necessary infrastructure and highway development.

"We're just coming out of an economic downturn and if we start trying to cut taxes on that our transportation needs would go down and we can't afford to do that," said Rep. Johnny Floyd, (D)-Cordele.

Prices are expected to continue to climb towards three dollars. "No one wants to be the first one to do it and when someone does, then you try and stay in line," said Watson.

Three dollars may come quicker for Georgia consumers who just want a little relief. "I just wish it would go back down a little bit or stop or something," said Graham.

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