Oil company challenges Wisconsin's minimum gas markup law

The Associated Press

An oil company has filed a lawsuit challenging Wisconsin's minimum markup law on gasoline.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — An oil company has filed a lawsuit challenging Wisconsin's minimum markup law on gasoline.

Krist Oil Company filed the lawsuit Monday in Vilas County Circuit Court. The company alleges the law violates businesses' right to operate free of anti-competitive and arbitrary government regulation and amounts to a hidden tax on consumers.

The law was passed during the Great Depression to prevent large sellers from undercutting smaller ones. It requires gasoline retailers to charge 6 percent over cost or 9.18 percent over the average wholesale cost, whichever is greater.

A federal judge in 2009 froze enforcement of the statute in a separate lawsuit but a federal appeals court ruled the next year that the state could enforce the statute.

A state Justice Department spokesman says the agency is reviewing the lawsuit.

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