The Gas Price Game
It is August 2022 so time for my next Al’s Corner note.
Again, nothing to promote this month for the STL Transportation Club activities.
Disturbing Gas Price Costs Are All Over the Place–If you have read my monthly blog over the years, I hope you have noticed that I try and write about topical and current events. This month I am going to discuss what I have observed in gas prices in our area.
The Difference Between Missouri and Illinois—locally in the Metro St. Louis area Missouri has always been twenty cents or more per gallon less than Illinois just across the river. They have a lower tax on it. It not been a secret that many Illinoisans cross over to pay less for gas, it has been happening for years.
My Gas Observations in the middle of July—in one day I saw:
Park Hills, MO area—$3.74 per gallon
Fifteen miles north—$3.89 per gallon
Another fifteen plus miles in Festus—$4.19
Same for South STL another fifteen miles north—-$4.19
Across the river in Sauget, IL another 20 miles —4.39
O’Fallon, IL 82 miles away it was $4.64
Difference–.90 per gallon
Fast forward to Monday August 1
Bethalto, IL —$3.99 per gallon.
Again, the same day
O’Fallon, IL—- $4.54 per gallon. Same state, 25 miles apart?
Difference—.55 per gallon
On August 6th I drove from O’Fallon, IL to Charleston, IL area and back.
Charleston, IL—$4.05 per gallon
Effingham, IL —3.89 per gallon
Vandalia, IL —–4.15 per gallon
Greenville, IL—–3.99 per gallon
Lebanon, IL——-4.39 per gallon
O’Fallon, IL ———4.49 per gallon
This was the same state, but different counties, in Illinois, 110 miles apart.
National Average $4.05 at the time
Currently National Prices
Lowest State —$3.55 Texas, with many others at $3.62 per gallon
Highest State—California at $5.44 and several other western states $4.80 per gallon range.
Illinois $4.42 per gallon average currently, on the 8th of August.
Missouri $3.66 per gallon on the 8th of August
Illinois Tax—.39 per gallon average
Missouri Tax —.22 per gallon
Difference–.17 per gallon in tax, .78 difference in the price it is being sold at.
A couple more thoughts—A few months ago the Mayor of I believe Wentzville; Mo was complaining why his gas stations were .40-.50 per gallon higher than stations 10 miles closer to the Missouri River? So, it happens in other places too it seems.
Finally, today gas was reportedly lower in towns south of STL in Missouri selling at $3.28 per gallon.
My conclusions on gas prices —seems to me the pricing for fuel is out of control, impossible to understand, with no one really watching it. I have not heard any party say, “we have to stop this price gauging with local gas stations!” Nor has anyone talked about why the cost is much higher for the same gas product state to state. I realize that each state has different tax structures, but they would not create this big of a difference.
What you can do:
Reduce how much you drive and reduce demand.
Purchase more fuel-efficient vehicles
Increase your milage by driving slower
Go online and research area gas stations to try and save money. It can be 50 cents per gallon in savings by just driving 10 miles.
Why Diesel is so high is another story!
Have a great month and remember that I am not an expert on fuel, but I don’t think it takes an expert to see that many areas are getting hit hard by these high prices Big Time! AL