My California brother-in-law has complained about the high cost of gasoline for the past several years. In general, it seems gasoline is about 75 cents to a dollar/gallon more expensive in California than in Texas. Just out of curiosity what does the "price map" show? In San Pedro, $4.05/gallon. In Grapevine, TX, $3.29.
The AP is reporting that gas prices may jump in California due to new emissions law:
California's greenhouse gas reduction law already has shaken up the state's industrial sector, costing it more than $1.5 billion in pollution permit fees.
It's now poised to hit the pocketbooks of everyday Californians.
Starting next year, the law will force fuel distributors into the same cap-and-trade marketplace as utilities and major manufacturers. The oil industry says it will lead to price increases of at least 12 cents a gallon immediately, while state regulators say any price spikes could vary widely, from barely noticeable to double-digits.
I assume the local corner service station will hike gasoline prices anyway and then blame the "carbon tax" for the jump in gasoline prices.Anticipating angst at the pump, a leading state lawmaker is raising concerns about the uncertainty of the law's impact on prices for consumer fuels, including gasoline, natural gas, propane and heating oil. Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, says the state should scrap the plan to put fuel producers under the cap-and-trade provision of the law and instead institute a 15 cent-per-gallon "carbon tax."
This is interesting. A few days ago while in the Bakken I overheard a couple of oil workers talking about "1099-jobs." I posted a note to that effect. Now, The Los Angeles Times has a Q&A on the subject. Here's the question:
Dear Liz: I just received my tax forms from my employer for last year. I was originally a W-2 employee, paid hourly, as a receptionist. But it seems that at some point during the year, my employer changed me to a 1099 employee without telling me or having me fill out paperwork. After researching the characteristics of a 1099 employee, I found I do not qualify at all. I am upset that I will have to pay taxes on this income, since I thought they were being withheld from my pay. Do I have any recourse?I love the answer:
Answer: Your employer has put you in an impossible situation. If you tell the truth, you'll tip off the IRS to the company's deception, which could put your job in danger. If you go along with the lie, you'll have to pay your boss' share of taxes in addition to your own.
"The good news is the IRS is really busy and probably won't [audit your employer] for a couple of years," said Eva Rosenberg, an enrolled agent who runs the TaxMama site. "By then, you should have a better job elsewhere."And then this:
Some employers pretend that their employees are independent contractors as a way to reduce the company tax burden and perhaps dodge new health insurance requirements. It's a scam that tax authorities are keen to uncover and penalize.Not always. Often it is not a scam. There are legitimate reasons for "1099-jobs" and with ObamaCare we will probably see more of them. Just one of the unintended consequences. But don't you just love the "TaxMama site" answer: "...the IRS is really busy and probably won't audit your employer for a couple of years. By then you should have a better job elsewhere."
[Note: I would assume that sometime during the year the pay stub would have shown significant changes in tax withholding, social security payments, and Medicare payments.]