Archive for Monday, December 31, 2012

100 years ago: ‘Enormous’ price increase in store for natural gas consumers

December 31, 2012


From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Dec. 31, 1912:

  • "Fifty cent gas for Lawrence seems to be the inevitable result of the decision by Federal Judge Pollock in Kansas City in which permission was given for the Kansas Natural Gas company to hike the price of gas sold to distributing companies. An order was made by Judge Pollock in the federal court late yesterday which permits the Kansas Natural to charge 31 cents a thousand cubic feet for gas delivered at the state line. This means that the consumer probably will have to pay 50 cents a thousand for the product delivered.... The local company is preparing to ask the city council to amend the franchise now held by the company so that it can meet the hike on the part of the Kansas Natural with a raise in the rate charged the local consumer.... It was rumored this morning that any action tending to hike the price of gas in Lawrence would be attended with a vigorous remonstrance on the part of local consumers, and it was even intimated that legal methods might be adopted to stop such a hike."
  • [Editorial] "The Journal-World is certainly not pleased with the gas situation. It regards this enormous increase as entirely unnecessary and unjust but it recognizes the helplessness of the people in opposing the federal courts. There is only one question that can rightfully be considered at this time and that is, 'Shall we give up natural gas or consent to pay the outrageously high price?' This paper has believed that an increase was imperative but it has not believed the increase should be so enormous.... If the town would rather shut off the natural gas it has a perfect right to do so. True there is a contract or franchise, but it is not binding.... Nothing will be gained by denouncing the court because that will not make gas any cheaper. The only question we have up is what price we can pay if we want to pay anything. It is squarely up to the people now to either make the best contract we can or throw out natural gas. Let us get behind the mayor and council in settling this question, not in passion, not in anger but in plain common sense."
  • "Yesterday was such a Sunday as one does not often see in December. It was more like a spring day than a Sunday in the middle of the winter. It was clear all day and the sun warmed up things so that overcoats were superfluous articles of wearing apparel. Many people were out, as a result, and enjoyed the day out of doors."
  • "New Year's day promises to be a lively one at the local Y.M.C.A. as the basketball sharks of the city Sunday schools will tangle in their annual basketball tournament. The boys have been divided according to their weight into two classes and the younger one or Class B will start their games tomorrow morning at 9."


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