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People Pawning Possessions to Pay for Petroleum

KBTV (Beaumont, TX) 25apr2006


Pawning for Gas Money BOB ROBUCK / Channel 8 News (Austin, TX) 25apr2006

Southeast Texans are turning to new extremes to fill up their gas tanks. Pawn shop owners from Bridge City, Beaumont and Silsbee say customers are pawning off their belongings to buy gasoline.

Gene Cormier owns Tri-State Pawn in Silsbee. Cormier says his shop has been busy lately with gas price averages only cents away from an all time high.

The owner says people are looking for fast cash just to have transportation.

Thursday he said "We have people who probably never pawned anything in their lives. They’re pawning just so they can get back and forth to work."

Oliver Keene is one customer who understands that pain. Thursday he sold some of his favorite DVD`s for gas money.

Keene says after Hurricane Rita, rising gas prices hurt even more

"It’s all you can do to survive,” he told us.

Meanwhile Cormier says at least 50%of the merchandise in his shop comes from people looking to fill up.

Watch Hometown News at 6 every weekday night for our exclusive "Pump Patrol"— a daily look at some of the cheapest gas prices in the Golden Triangle.

You can participate in our Pump Patrol by clicking on the icon to the left of the screen.

source: http://www.kbtv4.tv/news/default.asp?mode=shownews&id=11139 25apr2005

Pawning for Gas Money

BOB ROBUCK / Channel 8 News (Austin, TX) 25apr2006


Climbing gas prices have some folks pawning whatever they have to fill their tanks.

"They bring in anything from DVDs to CDs, TVs, stereos, car audio, jewelry. Jewelry is a big item," pawn broker Michele Morgan said.

Some pawn brokers say a large part of their business now comes from people desperate to fill their tanks. Customers may only get a few dollars or maybe even $20. Not quite enough to fill a tank, but they come anyway.

"There's some irony in it also. People are actually pawning their rims and wheels for gas money," said Dio Barroga, another pawn broker.

The irony doesn't stop there. Some even pawn their livelihoods for a few gallons of gas.

Richard Cyrus is one of them. He mows yards for a living and he pawned a lawn mower.

"When you have kids to pick up from school and stuff like that, even though $5 doesn't give you but two gallons in your truck, sometimes it's feasible," Cyrus said.

The average cost of a gallon of gas in Texas hovers around $2.73. AAA Texas says that could rise significantly this summer, causing people to look for more alternatives to find money for gas.

source: http://www.news8austin.com/content/your_news/default.asp?ArID=159895 25apr2006

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