Bolinas stocked with regular gas

02/21/2013

Bo Gas, the nonprofit gas station whose modest profits subsidize affordable housing in Bolinas, began selling regular gas last week after being stocked with only plus and premium fuels since late December. Nearby residents who find it more convenient to fill up locally than to drive over the hill for cheaper prices will be relieved, said Lesa Kramer, director of the Bolinas Community Land Trust, which purchased the gas station and surrounding buildings about a decade ago. “Farmworkers, people who clean houses and do yardwork in Bolinas and Stinson—there’s a whole subculture of people who don’t go over the hill all that often,” said manager Al B. Foreman. Bo Gas suspended its supply of regular gas the same day a local man filled up his truck and observed immediate damage. (Ms. Kramer said that it was an old truck, and that the land trust paid for repairs.) A gas sample sent to a Vallejo lab showed suspected water intrusion, or what is known as “phase separation.” Multiple tests arranged by the land trust confirmed the integrity of the tank, and Ms. Kramer said the bad gas was likely delivered that way. Still, the incident has dampened what would have been a record year for the station, with an expected profit of nearly $25,000. (The station sells in one year what most stations sell in a month—about 100,000 gallons—and Ms. Kramer believes most is sold to locals.) Are the prices steep? Ms. Kramer acknowledged that they might be “about a buck more” than elsewhere in Marin—and even the highest in California—but insists that people are happy to have a local filling station.