Local News

Fuel prices forcing businesses to change operations

Posted June 13, 2008

With the state average for regular unleaded gas edging toward $4 a gallon, small-business owners say they are having to change the way they operate.

"We have had to raise our delivery prices," said The Blossom Shop's Julie Berry, who has raised the cost of delivering flowers by $2 in the past six months.

And, she says, the increase might not stop there. The flower shop has also stopped delivering to certain areas of the Triangle because sending someone there and back there is no longer worth the cost.

"You hate turning down the business, but you're not going to make money on it," Berry said. "You know, obviously, you have to turn it down."

Shannon Hathaway, who owns the Cary-based landscape company Green Heron Landscaping Services, says she has also had to turn down customers living more than an hour's drive away.

"We've had to tell people that they're better off hiring a local landscape contractor who doesn't have to charge the prices for the distances we'd travel," she said.

Green Heron's hauling truck uses $125 of diesel fuel every three days. That's forced the company to increase its prices 20 percent.

Hathaway, who drives approximately 100 miles a day to consult with customers, has also traded her conventional SUV for a hybrid SUV to double her miles per gallon. She has also combined orders for neighboring areas to make deliveries more efficient.

"That's made a huge difference," she said.

Both business owners also say fuel is also increasing the cost of their supplies because anything shipped to them has a fuel surcharge.

"Most small businesses – they have to really look at what they're doing," Berry said.


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  • paul3 Jun 13, 2008

    Seeing how left wing environmental groups love to clog our courts and stifle business and energy production with their ridiculous non stop law suites, its time to turn the table.
    I am now in the beginning stages of filing a class action law suite against the Sierra Club, Greenpeace, the ACLU, Den Mother Nancy P, Harry "bitter beer face" Reid and others.
    We shall sue them for billions of dollars lost from the American consumer and American business by high prices create by them blocking any attempt at increasing domestic production for the past 30 years.

    Oh and another thing, for the left wingers that say drilling will do no good in lower prices for over 10 years, I say nonsense. The market is all about futures. If the United States came out and said for the next 10 years were are going to use all the resources we have available, and double our domestic supply, you would see the price of oil drop $30 a few days. And stop the save the earth nonsense. Do you see Russia, Venezuela, Bra

  • EyesintheSkies Jun 13, 2008


  • lizard Jun 13, 2008

    More democrat mess. Want everyone to do without. "Just go to and fro from work and pay taxes so we can continue our social experiments with your money." When will people wake up and start fighting these facists?

  • howdiditgettothis Jun 13, 2008

    Frankly, I am tired of hearing prices going up, while the quality and quantity of what I'm able to buy with my dollar shrinks, and shrinks, and shrinks.

    I HATE my trash bill. I have NEVER understood why there is a "fuel surcharge" --- even when gas was less than $2 a gallon.
    You chose to open a waste "industry" (or flower shop, or pizza delivery, or whatever...) -- don't you factor these things into the cost of your doing business?

    Problem is -- higher level management isn't making as much profit as they used to -- so they slag it off on the workers.

    Remember the two latest Wall Street CEO's to "retire" (or leave)-- record retirement/exit packages & perks, yet the companies they left reported record losses.

    My advice would be to hunker down and AVOID any unnecessary purchases. Get rid of any credit card debt.

    The worst is definitely not over.

  • iamforjustice Jun 13, 2008

    Emphasis on DOING WITHOUT -
    June 13, 2008 6:50 p.m.
    Report abuse
    Well I get enough of "doing without" when my wife comes home from being tired in all the traffic and she has to get off the highway to get gas and she is p issed to have to get back on in the traffic to get home an hour late. So because of gas...I do without...and I am frustrated!!!!!!!!!!

  • lauraleigh Jun 13, 2008

    For all you guys blaming this spiraling cost on Bush - funny, ain't it, how gas prices have more than doubled with our Dem-controlled Congress, these past two years?

    We need to be as self-reliant as possible - returning to the concept of Victory Gardens, recycling, making do... doing without. Emphasis on DOING WITHOUT -

  • whatelseisnew Jun 13, 2008


    Guess you like the Democrat energy plan better. Do not drill for oil and lets burn up corn for ethanol. You are thanking the wrong people, those directly responsible are the enviro-terrorists and their nutjob Democrat politicians. By the Way George Sorros and loving the money he is making on the futures market that is driving up oil prices with the speculation. And to make it even better, the Dems want to tax the oil companies. That sure will lower prices in a hurry.

  • iwondersometimes Jun 13, 2008

    If I told my boss to pay for my gas, once he got through laughing, would have two words..."you're fired." Gas prices will fall on the working man's shoulders while others shrug and say "oh well, long as it doesn't go over $10, I'm ok." Sure do still see a lot of SUVs with moms on cell phones running kids here and there. Don't want to upset the little darlings.
    At least Bush and Cheney have carved out some nice retirement money for themselves. And I voted for them!

  • iamforjustice Jun 13, 2008

    Have any of you all noticed that Middle Eastern stores give you the best and friendliest service. Sometimes I go into my neighborhood store and don't have to pay for certain items. They are just given to me. Most times when the change due is something like 4. 88...the clerk will just give me a 5 dollar bill and say have a nice day. Can someone tell me what's up with that...something is wrong. I feel it in my bones. Comments welcome.

  • WRAL is joe_dirt Jun 13, 2008

    America is being held hostage by the Middle East as well as domestic big oil. Here's my plan..... Stage a take-over of all big oil producers disguised as let's say.... Koreans. When the fat-cats of the Middle East start squealing for the Red, White and Blue to come and fight off the bad guys and get their toys back (again), we then begin negotiations as to just how much it will cost for us to give them a hand. I say hold out for free oil for the next thousand years (or so). Who better qualified or experienced to pull off an under-handed mission like that than the good old U.S. of A. It's not like we've never did anything like that before, now is it?