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Published: Thursday, 3/21/2002

Measure allows stations to skip labels on pumps


Gas stations no longer will be required to tell consumers if they are selling an ethanol-gasoline blend, under the bill that Ohio Gov. Bob Taft is to sign into law today in Maumee.

An Oklahoma company that calls itself the country's second-largest ethanol marketer was behind the change, saying the labels on pumps scared off some consumers.

“Sometimes it has an effect of being perceived as a warning,” said Bruce Heine, director of government affairs for the Williams Co., based in Tulsa.

Previous ethanol blends sometimes were detrimental to vehicle engine performance, but that no longer is the case, he said. He expects sales of the blends will increase without the label. For such blends, ethanol usually makes up 10 percent of the mixture.

In Ohio, 37 percent of gasoline sold last year contained ethanol, according to state motor fuel tax records.

The Ohio Petroleum Council, which represents oil refineries, did not take a stance on the issue.

Several states, including Indiana, either never required the labeling or repealed the provision, Mr. Heine said.

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