TOPEKA – Dan Murray, Kansas state director of the National Federation of Independent Business, says small businesses want Congress to pass legislation to restart and expand offshore oil and natural gas drilling as a way to help increase the nation’s fuel supply and secure lower gasoline prices.
"Gas prices have skyrocketed in the past 12 months, Murray said. According to AAA's Daily Fuel Gauge Report, the average price of regular in Kansas has jumped 31 cents a gallon in the past month and $1.02 a gallon in the past year.
"That’s taking a big toll on small businesses," Murray said.
“Small businesses operate on thin profit margins even in the best of times, and these aren’t the best of times,” he said.
“When gas prices rise, people worry about the economy, and they worry about paying the bills, so they don’t spend as much,” Murray said.
“Plus, when gas prices go up, the cost of everything else goes up," he said. "If you’re a small business owner, you’re paying more for supplies and inventory and more on transportation. You have a choice: Jack up prices and risk driving your customers away, or absorb the increase and lose money.
“The only right answer is for Congress to take steps to decrease our dependence on foreign oil and ensure our energy independence,” Murray said.
“Our members are asking Kansas' Congressional delegation to support efforts to restart and expand offshore drilling," he said. "A dependable source of affordable oil would help our businesses grow and create jobs and finally put this recession in our rearview mirrors.”