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Moving company looking to raise rates due to high fuel prices

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BATON ROUGE — A local moving company, Henry Hauling, plans to ask the Public Service Commission for permission for a rate hike in the coming days due to surging gas prices.

"With the Louisiana Public Service Commission, every owner of a moving company is required to draft a tariff, and that's approved by the state," owner Stephen Henry said. "That rate is approved and locked in by the state. We have the right to change them every few years unless we call them and change them and get them approved."

When gas began going up recently, Henry said he added a 15-percent fuel surcharge for trips longer than 30 miles. Now, he says his company needs to raise rates again in order to remain profitable.

"In the next few days, we plan on calling a meeting with the Louisiana Public Service Commission, to see if we can get our fuel surcharge increased up to 25-percent to help with inflation and our bottom line," Henry said.

At Highland Road and I-10, multiple stations were selling diesel for $4.25 per gallon. At one station, premium was going for $5.05, midgrade was $4.45 and regular was selling for $3.85.

Henry said to give you an example of just how expensive things have become, back in November his company was charging $300 to move two pallets. Henry said the going rate is now $600, and as the businesses absorb the costs, they are then passed on to the consumers.

He said his clients have been very understanding, knowing that this is a volatile situation and the prices are out of his control.

"We look at the mileage and how far they are going and explain what we are seeing at the fuel pump and how we have to off set that cost to the customer," Henry said. "Most are very understanding, if they have to go cross country and they realize, 'hey, we are crossing states with higher fuel prices.'"

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