Analysis of Gas Prices in Howard County, Maryland



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Analysis of Gas Prices in Howard County, Maryland


Prepared for

Talkin and Oh, LLP


Daraius Irani, Ph.D., Executive Director

Susan Steward, Economist

Jessica Varsa, Senior Research Associate

Rebecca Ebersole, Senior Research Associate

Kierran Sutherland, Research Analyst

December 27, 2013


Towson, Maryland 21252 | 410-704-3326 | www.towson.edu/resi


Table of Contents


Table of Figures 3

Acronyms and Abbreviations 4

1.0 Executive Summary 6

1.1 Economic Analysis Findings 6

1.2 Land Planning Analysis Findings 7

1.3 Conclusion 7

2.0 Introduction 8

3.0 Economic Analysis 9

3.1 Annual Analysis 9

3.2 2012 Cross-Sectional Analysis 11

4.0 Land Planning Analysis 14

4.1 Zoning Considerations 14

4.2 Examples of Gas Station Approvals and Denials in Howard County 19

4.3 Number and Location of Gas Stations 20

4.4 Underlying Zoning 25

5.0 Conclusion 28

6.0 References 30

Appendix A—Economic Modeling Assumptions and Explanations 36

A.1 Assumptions 36

A.2 Results 37

A.3 Technical Discussion—Variables 38

A.4 2012 Cross-Sectional Analysis Variable Discussion 45

Appendix B—Summary of County Zoning Regulations 47

B.1 Howard County 47

B.2 Anne Arundel County 47

B.3 Baltimore City 48

B.4 Baltimore County 48

B.5 Carroll County 49

B.6 Frederick County 49

B.7 Harford County 49

B.8 Montgomery County 49

Appendix C—County Zoning Regulations Pertaining to Gas Stations 51

C.1 Anne Arundel County 51

C.2 Baltimore City 56

C.3 Baltimore County 60

C.4 Carroll County 66

C.5 Frederick County 68

C.6 Harford County 71

C.7 Howard County 73

C.8 Montgomery County 81

Appendix D—List of Relevant News and Cases 88

D.1 Anne Arundel County 88

D.2 Baltimore City 88

D.3 Baltimore County 88

D.4 Carroll County 88

D.5 Frederick County 89

D.6 Harford County 89

D.7 Howard County 89



D.8 Montgomery County 90


Table of Figures



Acronyms and Abbreviations


A listing of economic and fiscal impact terminology frequently used throughout this report can be found in Figure 1.
Figure : Acronyms and Abbreviations

Term

Definition

CUP

Percentage of jurisdiction that is zoned to allow gas stations under a “conditional use permit.”

CUP_Zone

Dummy variable. “1” if the gas station is located within this zone, “0” otherwise.

Distance Road

Distance of a particular station to a major highway such as I-695 or State Highway in miles.

Distance Station

Distance of a particular station to its nearest competitor in miles.

Dummy Variables

Variables that are characteristic identifiers of the data, but are assigned the value 0 or 1 depending on the characteristic. For example, one may use “sex” in a regression and set 1 for “female” and 0 for “male.” If the respondent is female then the dummy variable will be 1, and and results will be the difference between male and females for the dependent variable.

Household Income per Capita

The average reported annual income for a region defined by the U.S. Census estimates divided by the recorded population estimates for the region as defined by the U.S. Census.

Margin

Average recorded margins for a given region or station over a period of time (annual or weekly). Margins reflect the difference between retail and rack, less taxes and freight.

Nonconform

Dummy variable. “1” if the gas station is located in a nonconforming zone, and “0” otherwise.

Permit

Percentage of jurisdiction that is fully zoned for gas stations.

Population

The average annual recorded or estimated population for a given region as determined by the U.S. Census.

Rack Change

The difference in rack prices between the current period and the previous period.

Rack (Wholesale) Prices

Average rack prices recorded over a period of time (annual or weekly) for a given region or station.

Retail prices

Average retail prices recorded over period of time (annual or weekly) for a given region or station.

Stations per Capita

The total number of stations within a given region during a period of time divided by the total population estimate as recorded by the U.S. Census.

Tax

The average excise tax reported for that region during that time.

Unbranded Percent

The percentage of unbranded stations within a given region during a period of time (annually) divided by the number to total stations during that same period.

Source: RESI


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