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High fuel costs felt at Columbia gasoline stations

Friday, March 18, 2005 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 1:03 p.m. CDT, Friday, July 11, 2008

As the price of gasoline reaches a record high, Columbia resident Amy McBroom says she can notice a difference at the Petro Mart on College Avenue, where she works as an assistant manager.

“Businesswise, it’s a lot slower,” she said.

McBroom said the station’s customers are primarily college students with little money, and it is not uncommon to see people pay only four or five dollars at the pump.

She said rising gas prices have not only affected the status of business at Petro Mart, but the status of her pocketbook, as well.

“It’s ridiculous,” McBroom said. “I have someone I share my car with, and she drives to Moberly two days a week. Our gas bill has gone up $50 a month, just because of rising prices.”

McBroom said alternative forms of transportation are not valid options for her.

“It’s one of those scenarios where I don’t have a choice,” she said. “I have to get back and forth to different places…I’d rather drive.”

Not everybody affected by rise of gas cost

But not everyone has been affected as much as McBroom.

Paul Lovern, who delivers forDomino’s Pizza on Ninth Street, said rising gas prices have not hit his store as hard as other Domino’s locations.

“Fortunately for us, it’s not as bad because our radius is limited,” Lovern said. “It still affects us, but not as bad as the other stores.”

Alison Martin, who works in the grant department of the Rehabilitation and Continuing Education Program in Columbia, said gas prices have not affected her much because she spends so much time in town.

“It’s probably hitting people who have to commute,” Martin said. “They probably have to scale back just to get to work.”

Car pooling is a good idea for people trying to save at the pump, Martin said.

“You get to know people and develop some really close relationships,” she said.

MU freshman Noah Hollenkamp said he travels home to St. Louis at least once a month. He said he has not been cutting back to avoid increasing costs.

“I’ve seen (the prices) rise and fall, but I haven’t had any problems,” Hollenkamp said.

McBroom said she thinks gas prices will continue to go up and might even reach $2.50 a gallon by summer.

“Pretty much what people are paying for gas is really what the gas companies are paying for fuel themselves,” McBroom said. “There’s a markup for consumers, but the companies aren’t making much money off gas right now.”


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