ArkLaTex man pitches program to cut gas costs for consumers

By Katrina Webber - email | bio

BOSSIER CITY, LA (KSLA) - An ArkLaTex man has introduced a program which he says will make gas guzzle less of local drivers' money. 

Joseph Evans has launched the Gas Assurance Plus Program in the Shreveport-Bossier area, but his plan is to take the concept nationwide, and eventually worldwide.

"There's only one catch, and the catch is that you have to have a need for fuel," Evans said at a news conference outside a Bossier City gas station Thursday morning.

Based on Evans' description, the program involves drivers paying now for gas that they'll use later.  He said users will enter into a contract with his company, Evans Consolidated Industries, whereby they'll be able to lock-in a negotiated discount price per gallon of gasoline. 

"You simply fill up like normal," said Evans.  "Once a month, you send us your receipts and then we send you the difference over your locked-in price."

According to the company's website, the contracts vary based on the time length and number of miles an individual drives.  Those factors also determine how much the driver must pay in an up-front fee., which can range from about $500 to almost $1600, the website says.

"You save about $400-500 on top of the price of your package, so your average savings per year is about $500," Evans said.

We had Tim Shaughnessy, an economics professor at LSU-Shreveport look over the concept.  He said based on his calculations, the figures don't add up.

"It's a gamble to me," he said.  "You're guessing whether you think the gas prices are gonna increase that much."

Using his own vehicle and gas usage as a model, Shaughnessy calculated his potential savings.  He based it on him signing a one year, 12,000-mile contract with a $500 up front fee and a locked-in price of $3/gallon of gas.

He said the price at the pump would have to be $1.25 more than his negotiated price for him to just break even.

"It's a decision people are gonna have to make on their own, whether they think the gas prices are gonna be that much higher."

For more information on the program, look for Links in the News on the home page of this website and click on "Gas Assurance Plus."