BALTIMORE (WJZ)—Some are blaming the Mississippi flooding for high prices at the pump. But one state leader is concerned something else is going on.

Kai Jackson explains our attorney general is outraged and he’s demanding answers.

If there is price gouging, Maryland’s attorney general says he plans to get to the bottom of it.

It’s not sticker shock. It’s wallet shock. Many drivers believe gas prices have gone through the roof, and some blame it on flooding in the Mississippi River.

“They’re so high, and they just keep going up and up,” said Lindsay Harbold, of Mt. Washington.

With the average price of gas trending down nationally, some wonder if there’s price gouging at gas stations in Maryland.

Now in Maryland the average is $4, last week it was $3.98, and last year this time it was $3.76.

The price jumped 20 cents overnight at a station in Annapolis.

It’s caught the attention of the attorney general.

“They cannot raise the price by that much and then rely on false and deceptive reasoning,” said Doug Gansler, Maryland Attorney General.

Drivers tell WJZ they’re not sure if stations are artificially hiking the gas prices, but say if they are, this state should crack down.

“Well I think they should investigate and if they were artificially inflated then the proper penalties should happen,” said Theresa Hayden, of Mt. Washington

But local economist Anirban Basu cautions drivers to pump their brakes about price gouging conspiracies.

“It should be noted that gasoline prices are higher throughout the United States,” Basu said. “And indeed, in many parts of the United States, they’re actually higher than they are in the Baltimore metropolitan area. So people can do the investigations if they want. The fact and the matter is there is a lot of demand in the world of oil right now, and there’s been some supply interruptions.”

Basu says he expects more people will take “stay-cations” this year—that means traveling within Maryland to places like the Eastern Shore, Ocean City, Garrett County and Deep Creek Lake because of the cost of traveling across state lines.

AAA reports that some prices have jumped 20-25 cents a gallon since Monday.

Comments (40)
  1. Brian says:


    1. Don Lloyd says:

      2 days ago i paid 3.89 for gas at a Gulf station. Today it is 4.01 a gal. They are ripping us off. if they can sell it for 20 cent less if you get a car wash that tells you they are sticking it to us.

  2. Harry Anchovi says:

    Uhhhh….it’s sickening to hear politicians screaming about gas prices….the taxes we pay on a gallon of gas FAR outweigh the profit of the evil oil companies on that same gallon. And the state/feds don’t do a single thing to get that gallon of gas out of the ground and into your tank. They just put their hands in our pockets. In Maryland, they just recently passed legislation to raise the gasoline tax again.

    So shut up, Maryland Attorney General, and investigate our legislature.

    1. TA says:

      They’re obviously investigating it. Stop complaining.

  3. Bob Kavanaugh says:

    Well, keep in mind that the price you pay at the pump doesn’t all go to the Gas Stations and Oil Companies. According to this site , the gas tax in Maryland is already over .42 cents per gallon!!! I’ve also heard O’Malley is trying to raise the gas tax in Maryland this year by 50%!!!

    1. TA says:

      Yeah, well people elected O’Malley, now they get to deal with him. All the illegals, and inner-city folk elected him because of his stance on welfare.

  4. pigeon says:

    Suspicious isn’t the word for it! Down right out-and-out pilfering of the public’s pockets, and there isn’t a damn thing we can do about it! They are worse then BGE and who would have ever thought any other company(ies) could “put it to” the public more then them?

    1. Mike says:

      pigeon, its the STATE that’s sticking to us. We have one of the highest tax rates on gas in the country

      1. lisa says:

        gas isent the only thing high in this state live in harford county and get raped in property taxes, and in these hare times they have the nerve to add late fees and interest and then threaten to take your house if you cant pay on time

      2. williejoe says:

        Mike , not true. We’re somewhere in the bottom 2/3rd. Calif has one of the highest but they also have no toll roads & the trans fund monies stay there & are not spent like OMalley’s group of bandits.

      3. pigeon says:

        Sorry Mike, you are incorrect. Yes they tax us but it is the companies that increase the price of gasoline and other fuels. And most of the reasons are based on what they feel MAY happen.
        I’d like to see the state and federal governments step in and do something about this. But, they won’t ’cause they like “sticking” it to the general public too.

      4. Joe says:

        No we don’t. It’s pretty much in the middle compared to other states.

        Here is a map showing the gas tax rates of every state.

  5. junior says:

    If the attorney general is concerned about price gouging then he should visit any of the local hospitals. They are the only places in the world where a person can legally sell a sick or dieing person bandaids for $220- a box and tylenol for $600- a bottle, or if thats not enough, how about $4500- for “therapy” (an old lady walking behind my wheelchair for a total of 2.50 hours.

    And your worried about the local gas station taking an extra $3.00 from you. Im glad I dont own a gas station.

  6. Tripweaver says:

    Of COURSE there’s price gouging. It’s the oil companies. This is what they do. Good luck proving it.

  7. Sheila McGrath says:

    Mr Attorney General get off your ass and do something about it. Call O’Malley and tell him not to raise the gas tax. Should be first on your list of things to do.

  8. independent says:

    Here’s a tip — check out the new gas station in Waverly Woods in Woodstock off Marriottsville Rd. Weeks ago it was over $4/gallon, way ahead of everyone else.

  9. Billiam says:

    Good luck trying to prove it – last week when oil went down $11 per barrel in two days, the two gas stations in Annapolis (Eastport/Hillsmere) STAYED at $4.09 a gallon (and had been that way for two weeks). This past Monday, when it went back up $5 per barrel, they RAISED it to $4.19 – both of them! Exxon and Shell on Bay Ridge Drive in Annapolis. Now, they figure they are cutting us a break because they DROPPED it to $4.09 – Big deal. I can go one mile up Forest Drive and pay cash and only be charged $3.95 a gallon. Mr. Attorney General – get to work.

  10. whatnow says:

    Everytime gas goes up, fast food chains raise their prices, but when the gas goes back down, they don’t lower their food prices. It costs twice as muh for a meal now as about 7 years ago. Ridiculous. And OweMalley wants to add more gas tax. Crazy!

    1. williejoe says:

      Whatnow, Stop eating that slop, it’ll kill you & besides, a bunch of porch monkeys might beat the s…..t out of you there.

  11. Employee #8 says:

    Haha, this is a funny, far right-wing blog. People on here really think the gov’t is making more than oil companies?!

    Not one person wants to pay an extra penny in taxes, I’d love to see my taxs go down and vote against tax increases. But to think for a minute the state’s gas tax is the issue here is absurd. The oil & gas markets are down almost 20% in the last two weeks. The gas stations near my house have increased there prices about $.25/gallon over that time. Sure, it may not be the local station, but their suppliers are making a killing.

    I understand these are oil futures and the crude isn’t delivered for 6-8 weeks so gas pump prices really shouldn’t follow daily markets. But, if they go up $.03/dollar increase on traded oil, then you think it should work in the opposite.

    Let me guess, our gas tax is a job killer? Not the piles of money oil companies are swimming in and not hiring? They are both hurting us. At least the state, at times, gives something back. Tell me what the oil companies have done for any of us lately??

    1. whatnow says:

      I guess you missed the article where OweMalley said he wants to add 20 cents a gallon in tax in addition to the gouging we are getting by the oil companies. Face it, we are getting it both ways and if pointing that out makes me right wing, then I’ll accept the monikor.

    2. Jeff says:

      Employee #8,
      You can use logic and facts, but I’ve found out on these posts that people don’t like facts, they just make stuff up. Like a post earlier saying MD has one of the highest tax rates on gas in the country, just simply not true. We’re right in the middle if not in the bottom half right now. The gas tax is 41.9 cents. The average gallon of gas is over $4.00 here in MD. You do the math. The oil companies are gouging us. You see how fast the gas price rises when oil prices rise. Wait till the oil prices fall and see how long it takes those prices to come down. Takes a long time compared to how fast it goes up.

  12. Dave McCall says:

    Let the tax paying citizens of this state VOTE on an increase in gas taxes not just have the fool in Annapolis say he wants to raise them.

  13. Williejoe says:

    Gansler should be suspicious of that pimple on his neck that might grow to a HEAD.

  14. grant says:

    nomalley is an idiot on fire this week. First the illegal immigrant education cost breaks now this.

  15. Nicole says:

    Maryland is definitely price gouging. I went by several gas stations on Ritchie Highway in Anne Arundel County. They have 4.12 and 4.16 on thier signs. My mother lives in northern NY and they have ALWAYS been 30 cents higher then us here in Maryland over the past 10 years that I have lived here. We have never been close to them. Well it is only 4.09 where she lives and it is going down!!!! How in the hell are we at 4.12..major price gouging going on EVERYWHERE in Maryland!

    1. williejoe says:

      You can buy it with a car wash @ a station on Pulaski Hwy for $3.74 today. Just north of the old golden ring mall.

  16. Shannon says:


  17. Redskin says:

    “The fact and the matter is there is a lot of demand in the world of oil right now, and there’s been some supply interruptions.” That’s a LIE. Gas prices have started to come down because of a lesser demand for gas because of the high cost.

    1. fraught says:

      Once again, the status and expectations of the refineries in the midwest and southern coast are not state secrets. Look and ye shall find.

  18. fraught says:

    It’s not rocket science or mysticism folks. The speculative market prices and trends are a matter of public record. Wholesale gas prices are published daily. If it really mattered to you, you would seek the answers. I’m simply convinced people like to complain about something.

    1. williejoe says:

      We complain about a,,,,,,,holes like you who think they are superior but couldn’t find their own a$$ with both hands.

  19. Richard Baldwin Cook says:

    Our AG us posturing – as usual. He is sniffing around for media coverage, nothing more. Evidence: the nepotism in Annapolis (son of Senate Pres Mike Miller, found unqualified by Judiciary Commission got appointed anyway. Gansler pretends he does not know about this – so he does not have to do anything about it Current AG = Future Awful Guv

  20. Larry says:

    If the public would ever band together and have a national “no-drive” day where nobody drove a car or bought fuel for just one day maybe we could send a message. It’s all posturing on Gansler’s part. Remember, he’s the AG that ruled against a gas station in Harford County for selling gas too cheap and now he’s worried about price gouging? Gimme a break. Keep electing Democrats Maryland, you get what you ask for.

  21. Really says:

    It’s not the “innocent ole oil companies”, the government is the big bad wold…I’m so sick of hearing that sort of republican rhetoric. And it is the same sort of rhetoric we heard in the ’70’s when they were hiding oil tankers offshore!

    Economists can say whatever they want, but when oil companies themselves are proclaiming “record profits”, they’re taking us to the cleaners at our own expense, plain and simple. And we’re paying them subsidies to do so.

    Then they claim a 2 cent per gallon profit? You’d have to be stupid to believe that. Now I’m supposed to believe that the tax (a percentage) is generating more revenue that the profit? I’m not buying it, and neither should you. Even at $.40 per gallon, there’s still a lot of money left on the table.

  22. Richard Baldwin Cook says:

    Attorney General Gansler is not likely to go after any target unless he first determines (1) the target is unpopular already and (2) there is no risk to Mr Gansler’s political fortunes to prosecute the target.

    I wrote to 15 months ago, asking him to look into the obvious nepotism of the son of the President Senate being appointed a judge – with Senate approval and after the relevant Judicial Commission had found Mike Miller to be unqualified to be a judge.

    My letter to our AG was via Certified mail. He has never bothered even to answer the letter. I visited the AGs office and was ‘promised’ a reply would be immediately sent to me. I have heard nothing. Mr Gansler is not going to trouble the political waters in Maryland, to uncover nepotism or to assure only qualified individuals become Maryland judges.

    Mr Gansler is in the AG office for serve Mr. Gansler and not to serve the people of Maryland.

    Would Doug Gansler make a fair minded and courageous governor?

    Not a chance.

  23. Richard Baldwin Cook says:

    Doug is out for Doug. That is the beginning and the end of anything our A G has to say.

  24. Nauman says:

    So, I just called the AG’s office, and found out that He cannot do anything on price gauging. Yes, he noticed the price hikes big deal what is he going to do about that? I was told that I should contact my legislator to see if something is in works for this. “They can charge whatever they want for the price of gas as long as customer keeps going there, and if you dont like it you can go somewhere else”. This is the response I received from AG’s office

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