How Gas Prices Hit Home

Last evening, I fueled my car at the Thornhill gas station. Low-test gas had reached a bargain basement price of $4.53/gallon, and I was drowning in my sorrows.

Then I noticed two Oakland police nearby. While I waited for the gold to be injected into my tank, I sauntered over and declared, “Shoot me now, I need to complain.”

After chatting for a while, I learned that one of these cops beats us all. He has a long daily commute to Oakland, and spends $1,100/month on gas to get here.

We appreciate that local police are making the rounds around the Village. Our gas commiseration made me think about who is attracted to law enforcement, given the risks versus rewards.

Per the Oakland Police Department’s hiring website, entry-level cops earn from $69-$87k/annually. Assuming after-tax income of $55-$70k/annually, a new Oakland cop might spend 25-30% on commuting costs alone!

Yes, we have nearly arrived at the point where gas costs only a bit less than housing. Coupled with rent or a mortgage, there’s not much left over. That really hits home.