Boots And Sabers

Wisconsin’s Drivers Already Benefiting From Striking Down of Minimum Markup Law

By - Mar 14th, 2009 07:25 am
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Wow, that’s a long title, but I couldn’t figure out a way to make it shorter.  In any case…

Overturning the state’s minimum markup law on gasoline is having a clear impact on prices in the Madison area.

Woodman’s Food Markets has revived a 3-cent-per-gallon discount for customers with a grocery receipt and Sun Prairie stations may be battling over prices.

The Woodman’s discount was scuttled in 2006 after a successful lawsuit by competitor Kwik Trip, which claimed the discounted price was below the legal minimum markup.

Woodman’s replaced that discount with $1 off a purchase of $30 worth of gasoline. Now, the grocery chain again is offering the 3-cent-a-gallon discount.

At Kwik Trip, corporate communications manager John McHugh said the company has no plans to change its 5 percent discount for gasoline paid for with a Kwik Trip credit card. That discount was permitted under the old markup law because it was considered a bank discount.

[…]

Regular gasoline at five Sun Prairie stations Friday afternoon was priced at $1.65 to $1.69 a gallon, the lowest in the Madison area, according to MadisonGasPrices.com, a Web site where drivers report local gas prices.

Prices at other area stations also were falling Friday, ranging from $1.71 to $1.93 a gallon outside Sun Prairie. A year ago, the local median price was $3.28 a gallon.

“Typically, we are probably going to start seeing some lower prices at the pump because that law was repealed,” said Larry Kamholz of AAA Wisconsin. “We’re going to see some competitive pricing.”

The general decrease in prices has a lot of reasons behind it, but the invalidating of the minimum markup law is certainly one of them.  The greater effect are all of the special discount programs that stores can now run to bring down prices.  Senior citizen programs… rebate programs… loyalty programs… etc. 

Just think of how much money Wisconsinites could have been saving over the YEARS if the legislature had done what was right and repealed this unwise law years ago. 

Categories: News & Views, Politics

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