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Experts Fear Local Gas Prices May Top 2008 Record

11:17 AM, Mar 6, 2012   |    comments
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BUFFALO, N.Y. - Prepare to pay more for your commute this week.

According to AAA., the average price per gallon of regular gas in the Buffalo area is up to $3.91.

One week ago, we were paying $3.83. It's risen twenty five cents in the past month, and a year ago at this time we were paying $3.46 per gallon.

WEB EXTRAYou can check out gas prices in your neighborhood on gasbuddy.com.

Some fear that drivers in Western New York are on pace to endure record-high prices at the pump. According to AAA, the region's highest ever average was $4.27 in July of 2008.

"I think that we very well might if things keep going, and in the short term," said AAA of WNY Vice President Wally Smith said. "But who knows? Everything is lining up not very well, and that means not very good things for the motorists right now."

Making matters worse, New Yorkers now pay the highest gas taxes in the country, nearly 70 cents per gallon, when you add state and federal taxes.

"That is not a good thing, and the state could look at that," Smith said.

Smith was referring to something the state previously tried -- capping its gasoline tax at a certain amount.

2 On Your Side asked Assemblyman Dennis Gabryszak about the possibility of state intervention.

REPORTER: Is there anything those of you in Albany are going to do about this?

GABRYSZAK: That's, well, you know, Aaron, I think it was maybe not quite a year ago, I think that we sat in this very room and we talked about the gas tax at that time.

Last spring, Gabryszak and senate Republicans called for a gas tax holiday, but it failed without support from downstate Democrats in the Assembly, whose constituents don't drive.

Gabryszak says he'll speak to the governor's office about something similar this year.

GABRYSZAK: I think if there is a way to cap, we definitely need to take a look at that.

REPORTER: How do we know that the downstate Democrats in the Assembly from New York City, aren't going to just do the same thing this year?

GABRYSZAK: We don't know that. But that becomes incumbent upon us to do what we can, and not just the Western New York Delegation, but really upstate.

These spring spikes at the pump have become typical in years past. The only difference this year is that it appears the spike is starting earlier and at a higher price.

The good news? The past three years, prices began to drop after Memorial Day. Although, they never fell back to their starting point when the spike began.

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