High gas prices affecting local businesses - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

High gas prices affecting local businesses

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ATLANTA -

The pain at the pump is putting pressure on many small businesses.

According to AAA, the new average for a gallon of regular gas is $3.87. That's up 16 cents from just last month and almost a quarter from this same time last year.    

Businesses that depend on mobility must watch the gas gauge closely and their success in doing that affects the prices that all of us pay.

At a station on Atlanta's Howell Mill Road, regular gas hovers just shy of $4 a gallon.
    
A few miles away, Moncrief Heating and Air copes with those prices. The family-owned company keeps 50 trucks moving around the metro area.

Service manager Tom Mutz says Moncrief has re-doubled its efficiency efforts.

"We try to keep guys in the same neighborhoods to keep the drive time down, also creates familiarity with the home owners," said Mutz.

Moncrief also plans a transition to smaller, more fuel-efficient service trucks.

Gasoline expenses remain a significant part of the company's costs, amounting to $39,000 in July and $45,000 dollars last month.
      
"We just take into account that fuel costs and fluctuating fuel costs will be part of the cost of doing business and we take that into our pricing structure as part of our overall overhead," said Mutz.

High gas prices are rippling through the economy, affecting more than prices at the pump and leading to questions about the potential effect on voters as Election Day approaches.

Some analysts believe gas prices and grocery costs may have a bigger effect on voters than monthly job reports.

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