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KESQ.com – Palm Desert,CA: Station owner protests Shell policies by jacking up pump prices

Associated Press – May 16, 2007 2:14 PM ET

As gasoline prices reach new highs leading up to the Memorial Day travel weekend, one station owner is charging rates shocking even San Francisco drivers: $$4-33-cents per gallon for economy grade, and an astonishing $$4-53-cents for premium.

But station owner Bob Oyster says the prices are meant to raise eyebrows. He set his prices far above competitors as a means of protesting onerous franchise rules imposed by Royal Dutch Shell PLC.

After 22 years at the station at the station at Sixth and Harrison, he’s vacating at the end of the month. He says he can’t afford to keep operating on razor-thin margins.

A Shell spokeswoman confirms that Shell wants to raise Oyster’s base rent, but only as a result of a recent commercial real estate audit.

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press.

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