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North Carolinians, like the nation, feeling it at the pump

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(The Center Square) – Mirroring the national rise in prices now at a fourth straight week, North Carolinians are paying 20 cents more than a month ago and about the same as a year ago at gas pumps.

Heading into the Easter holiday weekend, the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded was $3.30, or 23 cents below the national average. It was just over $3.10 a month ago and $3.31 a year ago.

Diesel is down, to $3.97 from $4.03 a month ago and $4.08 a year ago.

Nineteen states have lower average prices for unleaded; 24 are lower for diesel.

North Carolina this year taxes gasoline at 40.5 cents per gallon, up 2 cents from last year and the seventh-highest in the country. States higher are Pennsylvania (61 cents); California (54); Washington (49); and Illinois, Maryland and New Jersey (all 42). Diesel tax in North Carolina (40 cents per gallon) is 10th behind only Pennsylvania (78); Indiana (55); Connecticut, Illinois, New Jersey and Washington (49 each); Ohio (47); Maryland (43); and California (41).

Among 14 major metro areas, unleaded gas is the least expensive in Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton ($3.24) and most expensive in Durham-Chapel Hill ($3.38). Diesel is most consumer-friendly ($3.83) in Fayetteville.

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