While the price of gasoline falls, the cost of diesel climbs

Changes that took effect July first lowered the state gas tax, increased diesel tax

POSTED: 08:18 PM EDT Jul 09, 2013    UPDATED: 08:33 PM EDT Jul 09, 2013 
Diesel price
ROANOKE CO., Va. -

Gas prices have fallen in southwestern Virginia, but the diesel pumps are telling a different story.

Since tax changes took effect on July first, the price of diesel fuel has risen at many stations in the area.

The state's gas tax is now 3.5 percent of the wholesale price. The diesel tax is 6 percent.  So while gas tax dropped by several cents on July first, the diesel tax actually increased.

Truckers who were passing through the area Tuesday said the cost of fuel in Virginia is still very competitive with other parts of the country.

Jill Prieto was driving a horse trailer filled with equipment from Charlottesville to California. And even with an increase, she said Virginia prices looked pretty good.

"Right now I'm looking at a diesel price of $3.59 and I'm thinking oh that's great," Prieto told us. "And then when you get to the middle of the country they drop down close to $3.25 and I'm thinking I'm getting a pretty good deal. Once I get to California it's up to $4.29 - $4.30."

We heard a different perspective from Warren Radford, a local businessman who said rising fuel prices and higher taxes are making it harder to turn a profit.
"Buying diesel fuel and gas is my main expense," Radford said, "and with it going up and profit going down, it's pretty simple to figure out. "