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Reps. Larson and Slaughter Introduce Legislation to Curb Rising Gas Prices

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Location: Washington, DC


Reps. Larson and SLAUGHTER INTRODUCE Legislation to Curb Rising Gas Prices

Rep. John Larson (D-CT-1), Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus, joined Rep. Louise M. Slaughter (D-NY-28), Chairwoman of the House Rules Committee, to introduce the Eliminate Gas Price Discrimination Act, which grants gas station owners the ability to shop around for the cheapest wholesaler of their brand of gasoline. This flexibility would allow them to pass the savings on to the consumer.

"People across America are feeling the pinch at the pump as the price of gas has gotten out of control—in Connecticut a gallon of gas is upwards of $3.15 a gallon," said Rep. Larson. "Working families should not have to choose between a bag of groceries and a gallon of gas when oil companies are making record profits. We can't address outrageous gas prices without addressing the manipulative way in which oil companies set their prices. Congress must put an end to zone pricing, a regressive practice that helps big oil companies not consumers. Dealers should be free to shop around for the lowest costing supply—savings that would be passed on to the consumer."

"We've got a situation where American workers are having to pay more and more at the pump at the same time that the world's biggest oil companies are making record profits," Rep. Slaughter said. "It's bad enough to shrug our shoulders when average people pay for increases in gas prices caused by situations they have no control over, but to just sit back and watch rich companies profit from market manipulation is just wrong. Congress must step in to end zone pricing to help ease the burden of costly gasoline - a burden that is sometimes unbearable for our working families."

As a result of recent action taken in the Connecticut General Assembly, Reps. Larson and Slaughter sent a letter to the Government Accountability Office requesting an unbiased investigation into zone pricing and the role of the Federal Trade Commission. A recent zone pricing study by an outside organization has painted a clouded picture of the situation.

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