Cheap Gas? Cheap Drugs? Healthy Competition? – Colorado State House Bill 1208

While waiting for my groceries to be rung up at the local King Soopers, I was doing everything I could to avoid being blinded by the 51 thousand shiny magazines covered with pictures of Anna Nicole Smith and Britney Spears. So, I glanced down to see a flyer taped to the little check writing platform. It caught my eye because it said “cheap gas” somewhere – and “cheap gas” is way more interesting to me than who is getting custody of a rich celebrity baby or how bald and sad a former pop idol is today. So, not having much time, as my groceries were almost completely bagged, I jotted down a little information on the “cheap gas” (State House Bill 1208), trekked through the rain to the car (that I had JUST cleaned…) with my 3 year old, stepped in a puddle, got in my car and headed home.

After dinner, I Googled “State House Bill 1208” and found a recent article in the Rocky Mountain News, by Alan Gathright, with the information I was looking for.

If you are like me, driving a little out of the way to save a few bucks on gas is worth it. Luckily, the closest gas station is at King Soopers. I like this, because for every $100 I spend at their store, I can save 10¢ a gallon on gas. We are a family of 4 and 3 are hungry boys, so I get plenty of gas savings … Now, I have also noticed that Safeway, Sam’s Club and Albertsons offer similar gas “discounts” to their loyal customers. I never really gave it much thought, until I read this article in the Rocky Mountain News.

Apparently, last year some of the smaller gas stations in Montrose, Colorado “citing a 70-year-old predatory pricing law … won a $1.4 million court judgment against King Soopers for giving gas discounts to customers who bought groceries.”

This then sparked a decline in stores like Wal-Mart and Target offering inexpensive generic prescription drugs to their customers. Were they afraid of the same fate?

Now we have Colorado State House Bill 1208 that would allow supermarkets, like King Soopers, and other “big box” stores, like Target, to offer “deeply discounted gas and prescription drugs” to their loyal customers. Basically, this Bill would “remove the illegality of the loss-leader (pricing goods below their production cost) from Colorado’s Unfair Practices Act. The Act, passed into law in 1937, is designed to prevent merchants from using predatory pricing to monopolize the market.
(Northern Colorado Business Report)

This Bill has already passed the Affairs Committee and is on its way up to the House for debate. The supporters of this Bill believe that it will “breed healthy competition.”

Ok. Healthy competition. I am all for “healthy competition” – especially when it comes in the form of making prescription medicines affordable to those who need them.

But, I really don’t know about the gas issue… I will go out of my way to save few bucks on gas, but what are the real repercussions?
Here are my dilemmas:

  • Will the “discounts” be so large that the “healthy competition” will only be amongst the mega stores and supermarkets? Will this Bill mark the end of the family owned/ franchised corner gas station? Are we going to “Wal-Mart” the country to death?
  • Will the “cheap gas” pacify the American gas guzzler, thereby hindering the need for the MUCH NEEDED alternative energy and fuel movement? Will it make us “forget” WHY we need to move away from oil?
  • OR … (Here’s a stretch…)

  • Will the “cheap gas” make the oil business less lucrative, allowing for expansion into other fields – like alternative energy/fuels?

    Are we short sighted to ask for “cheap gas” or is it a necessary for “healthy competition” … ?


  • Posted by: Mariana Wagner – ‘Springs Realty Scoop Colorado Springs Real Estate and Monument Real Estate

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    About Mariana

    I am a Mom, Wife, Real Estate Agent Trainer and Mortgage Lender. Find me at http://www.marianawagner.com
    This entry was posted in Colorado Info., Colorado Springs Relocation. Bookmark the permalink.

    2 Responses to Cheap Gas? Cheap Drugs? Healthy Competition? – Colorado State House Bill 1208

    1. Pingback: savers tips » Cheap Gas? Cheap Drugs? Healthy Competition? – Colorado State Bill …

    2. Lila Polizzi says:

      This one makes sence “One’s first step in wisdom is to kuesstion everything – and one’s last is to come to terms with everything.”

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