Self-Serve Seeks Return

Borough council looking at full-serve issue again

MOUNT PLEASANT, Pa. -- Mount Pleasant, Pa., residents will know in approximately two weeks if full-serve gas stations will continue to be the only kind offered in the borough, or if those station owners who want to change to self-serve will get that opportunity, reported The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

Councilman Joe Bauer told the council Monday night that he met with most of the station owners last week after the full-serve or self-serve issue came up again, more than a year after council voted to have only full-serve remain in the borough.

In 2004, Ned Franks, vice president of Graft Oil, Scottdale, Pa., approached the council about the ordinance that limits stations to full service within borough limits. Citing rising operating costs, Franks said his Sunoco station was losing money because he had to employ an attendant for the gas pumps. Because of the higher expense, Franks said he might have to close the station.

At that time, the council voted against changing the ordinance to allow for self-serve stations, said the report. Members were concerned about the high number of elderly residents in the borough who wanted full-serve stations.

Even after that action, Graft Oil did not close the station, the report said; however, last month, Franks again approached council about changing the ordinance, adding that it is still a financial burden to pay an extra employee.

After his meeting with the station owners, Bauer told the council that one station owner does not care if the borough allows self-serve. Franks, of course, wants self-serve, and the manager of another Sunoco, who did not attend the meeting, told Bauer that that firm would like to see full-serve stay.

Councilman Ron Slater and Mayor Gerald Lucia both expressed their desire to see it remain a full-serve-only borough. Councilman Mike Tabita said the full-serve-only ordinance would run all of the gas stations out of town if a big name station located just outside the borough in a neighboring township. They give us $2,000 a year in taxes, and you're going to lose them, he said, according to the report.