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High Gas Prices and Rural America

Which states get hit hardest by high gas prices? The rural ones. From Reuters: The five states that are most vulnerable to the higher fuel prices...


Which states get hit hardest by high gas prices? The rural ones. From Reuters:
The five states that are most vulnerable to the higher fuel prices are Mississippi, Montana, Louisiana, Oklahoma and South Carolina. Drivers in Mississippi would have to spend 11 percent of their annual income, or about $3,345 on average, on gasoline if costs returned to $4 a gallon.These states have fewer alternative transportation options to the family car and generally have lower income levels.The five least vulnerable states are New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland and New Hampshire, with drivers in New York paying just 4.3 percent, or about $2,037, of their income for the higher-priced fuel.
I'm a big proponent of ratcheting up the price of gas, either by removing subsidies or raising taxes, to encourage a switch to public transportation. But it does bear mentioning that people in rural America are really stuck without alternatives to driving.I think in the long term pressure from high gas prices will probably result in more migration into the cities. But in the short term, that pressure can be hard on people-and this is especially true if a bad mortgage makes it impossible for them to move to denser areas.Photo (cc) from Flickr user monika.monika
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