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Poll: Is It Finally Time for New Jersey to Allow Self-Service Gas Stations?

Pumping their own gas may save motorists a few cents, but are the savings worth potential environmental problems?

The idea of bringing self-service gas stations to New Jersey is once again being proposed by legislators with a bipartisan bill in the offing. The measure has sparked a fierce response on both sides of the issue, causing State Senate President Steve Sweeney to announce he was opposed to the legislation. That may make it unlikely to be posted for a vote.

But what do you say?

  • Yes -- It cuts costs at the pump and might speed up time spent at a service station when you’re in a hurry.

  • Yes -- the issue has always been argued on the safety issue, with many people fearing that gas attendants need to be available at night for people who break down on the road. But everyone has cell phones now, and no one is working late fixing cars.

  • Maybe -- The proposed legislation would require service stations to maintain at least one full-service island for the next three years. I’m just not convinced it will cause the price of gas to drop. I’d rather see it work like some stations treat credit cards -- two different prices. Keep at least one full-service island, period, and if people want to pump their own gas to save a couple of cents, that’s fine with me.

  • No -- It is one of the very few small luxuries in this state. You don’t have to get out of the car in terrible weather. It’s particularly important to seniors, the disabled, and others who would find it difficult to pump their own gas. And whoever thinks it will take less time hasn’t been to many self-service stations in other states. It can take forever!

  • No -- Not only is it a hassle and time-consuming but once again, no one thinks about the environmental issues. People who pump their own gas often cause more spills, which seep into the environment and groundwater.

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