High gas prices have rocked the St. Louis area. Prices at some pumps hover around $3.20 or so on the Missouri side of the river, while in Illinois, taxes push prices past $3.40 or higher. Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be an end to high prices in sight, as the summer driving season may even push prices higher. While the St. Louis area isn't feeling the pressure as much as some states, residents here do have some legitimate complaints about the rising cost of fuel.
Here's a look at what St. Louis area residents have had to say about high gasoline prices on both sides of the Mississippi River.
-- "I always fill up to $10 worth, so I've noticed that I'm hitting the gas station more and more. It's not all bad, though. High gas prices gave me a good excuse to end my long-distance relationship." -- Katie Jones, violin teacher, O'Fallon, Ill.
* "It's suspicious to me that the price of gas would rise so dramatically when the oil that it's made from hasn't experienced similar jumps. I wonder who's naming the prices. Honestly, I'm pretty angry at the cost of gas in Illinois, but it seems like we're pretty powerless to do anything at all about it." -- George Zollner, mental health specialist, Highland, Ill.
* "It's too bad that it's not an election year. Gas prices tend to drop when someone's trying to stay in office, whether it's a Democrat or a Republican. I think it's because people notice paying more for gas right away, and they don't notice other big policy changes, so whoever's in power makes a quick deal with the oil companies before the ballots go out." -- Ted Boughers, construction worker, Granite City, Ill.
* "Look at what European countries are paying for gas. Over there, the cost of a gallon can be two to three times what we pay in the United States, so I'd say that we're pretty lucky. The problem is that we're not paying enough, and we're never going to have a sane environment policy until people get uncomfortable with gas prices. Obviously, I'm not looking forward to expensive gas, but it's necessary if we're ever going to convert to renewable fuel." -- Amy Kleinhoff, St. Louis
* "I'm glad that I started driving an old beat-up Chrysler Sebring a few years ago. Before that I had a minivan that got about 15 miles to the gallon, but I can get about 25 MPG if I'm smart. All of the experts say that it's more how you drive than what you're driving, so I guess if gas prices stay high, I'll try to drive more responsibly." -- John Carmichael, St. Louis
"What's really annoying about gas prices is sitting in St. Louis stop-and-go traffic right after getting off work. Not only am I paying $3.45 a gallon, but I'm not even getting anywhere. It seems to me that if we had better roads, people around here might not be feeling the crunch of high gas prices so dramatically." -- Catherine Pellock, Edwardsville, Ill.
* "Gas is about 20 cents cheaper in St. Louis, so that's where I gas up. It's one of the great things about living on the Illinois border, I guess. Gas in Illinois can be about $3.50 or more, which is where it was during the last period of high prices. I wish the politicians in Springfield would do something about Illinois gas taxes and maybe make things more affordable for the average consumer during times like these." -- Stephen Morrin, St. Louis
* "It's times like these that I wish St. Louis had a better public transportation system." -- Nick Lanham, St. Louis
- gasoline prices
- long-distance relationship
- in St. Louis
- the Mississippi River