ST. LOUIS - In Missouri, a lawmaker wants motorists to have a clue when gasoline prices will rise, and he€™s sponsoring a proposal to make it law, KMOV-TV reports. The measure would require oil companies to inform gasoline stations about price hikes, and then the gasoline retailers would post a sign at least 24 hours ahead of raising prices at the pump.
State Rep. Ray Weter€™s bill won€™t stop gasoline prices from inching up, but would give notice to drivers of increases. "Everybody talks about them (gas prices), but nobody does anything about them," he said. "I think I could do a little bit of something about them."
Many economists and analysts point out that measures like Weter€™s do little to help keep gas prices low. "Gasoline prices, in a very visible and immediate way, impact the consumer," said Joseph Truek, dean of the School of Business and Economics at Lynchburg College. "It hits them right in the pocketbook. Ultimately, there's very little they (legislators) can do."
With the cost of filling up topping $4 in parts of the country, gasoline prices are a hot topic in several states. Connecticut€™s governor approved a bill that limited the state€™s tax on wholesale gasoline that will likely save motorists a penny or two per gallon. A South Carolina lawmaker has floated a proposal that would restrict prices to their June 1, 2011, levels until this June. The Alaska governor wants to suspend the state€™s 8-cent-a-gallon tax for two years, but has met with opposition.