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City is Hit Hard by High Gas Prices

By Eileen Buckley

Buffalo, NY – Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown says the high price of gasoline is becoming a major concern for the City.

The Mayor says the City is being hit hard by rising gas prices. According to Brown, the City consumes about a million gallons of gasoline each year. Brown says for every penny increase in gas, it costs Buffalo ten thousand dollars.

Brown says the City's finance commissioner is examining ways of trying to conserve. But he says as prices continue to rise above $3.00 a gallon, there is not a lot the City can do.

"We have police vehicles, fire trucks and vehicles that have to be moving, and working during the day. That costs money, and as a result the amount City is spending on gasoline is way up and over budget, said the Mayor.

Earlier this week, the Hamburg Town Board voted unanimously calling for a boycott against Exxon-Mobile in response to the high gas prices. Brown says he believes municipalities need to speak out and express their concerns.

But some are criticizing the decision of Hamburg leaders, saying it would hurt the independent operators of those Exxon-Mobile stations. And for now, Buffalo's Mayor says he doesn't have plans to call for a similar boycott.

"For independent operators and business people trying to operate a gas station it is not their fault that prices are so high. I don't think we would call for a boycott because we don't want to hurt small businesses that are trying to operate. But certainly it is major concern and we can understand why other communities are taking steps to express the concerns we all share," said Brown.

The Mayor says the City will probably write letters to other levels of government to express their concerns. But Brown says he wouldn't be surprised if the Hamburg boycott generates some attention.