Dear Editor:

Regarding the article in The Pioneerabout local fuel (December 19th issue) as the owner of a local gas station, I cant help but take a bit of exception to those who vilify gas station owners.

We, as business owners, are no different than otherowners of businesses.

We serve the public, as do most all other businesses.

The differenceis that our cost of material is basically open to public knowledge. Be that as it may, it seems that people generally forget that businessesmust operate at a profit.

When was the last timeyou bought clothing?Did you complain loud and long about the 35 to 50 per cent profit the store made on that essential?How about groceries?Do you buy groceries?What about that average margin of 30 to 35 per cent?

I note that a box of Rice Krispies at Target is almost$1 less than at local retailers. Why? Seems like profit margin is different.

Or do you buy only loss leaders? What is a loss leader, you ask? A loss leader is an item sold at below cost to entice you into the business with the hope thatyou will purchase other goods that generate enough profit to cover the loss of monies that the loss leader generates.

Do you believe a gas station should sell fuel at a loss?Where, then, will it generate profit?From the air in the tanks, I guess…

As for the info forwarded by Gasbuddy, there is some incorrect information being given.

Transportation to truck fuel here nears four cents per litre, not the two cents as reported. Then you can add the B.C.carbon tax nearing seven cents per litre. Then add B.C. fuel tax.

Oh, and dont forget the surcharge the truck companies add to the transport cost.

Gasbuddy is correct in one aspect.Higher cost inventory is a determinant and, as costlier stock is replaced by lower cost stock, prices do begin to decline, but those declines dont happen overnight.

Yes, fuel is essential, but then, so is clothing, so is food. Whats the difference?I guess its just that fuel cost ismore open to public scrutiny.

J. Tames