Lawmakers consider ‘zone pricing’ ban at state gas stations

Posted: Updated:
NORWALK -

Connecticut lawmakers are considering plan that would level the playing field at gas stations across the state.

Part of the reason why residents pay different prices in different parts of the state is due to "zone pricing" - gas stations in different areas pay their wholesale distributors different prices.

Critics call it price gouging. Some lawmakers want to ban zone pricing and make the prices uniform across the state.

"There seems to be no rationale for why, in the area of the state that I live in, we pay on average 25 cents more a gallon," says state Rep. Laura Devlin (R-Fairfield).

Fuel distributors say some towns are cheaper to compete with truck stops and big box stores like Costco.

"One price for gasoline essentially means that I, as a wholesaler, cannot lower the price for one gas station without lowering it for all of them," says Dawn Middlemass, of Wheels of CT Fuel Stations.

Connecticut has been trying to ban "zone pricing" for at least 20 years. Fuel distributors say if they succeed, gas stations with artificially low prices will see substantial increases.

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