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TOPIC: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business?

How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 01 Sep 2005 12:24 #10900

  • muviebuf
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Welcome to a new world, ladies and gentleman.

As my uncle was fond of saying, the movie business is the harbinger of the economy.... entertainment is the first thing people cut when times get tight; conversly it is the first thing to come back when people have some extra cash.

However my uncle's saying was long before the poliferation of three-months-to-video DVDs. Over at Film-Tech they still toot the "theatre experience" but as been acknowledged by earlier threads in that forum - people don't care about presentation or theatrical experinece so much as convenience.

It doesn't help that Hollywood seems to have a delusion that the public will buy anything (How else to explain that Deuce Bigalow European Giglalo got made?)

The product is extremely weak for the next year or so and it could not come at worst time. Moviegoing is a habit and as I have been saying for a long time now, most people have gotten out of the habit.

It used to be that downturns in the ecomony helped the disouunt market, but that too was before DVDS. Now if a picture doesn't perform first run, it doesn't perform second run either.

To paraphrase a famous movie quote "Look out boys its going to be a bumpy ride".

[This message has been edited by muviebuf (edited September 01, 2005).]
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 01 Sep 2005 13:56 #10901

  • outaframe
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Yer 'ol uncle was a savvy dude... How the economy has hung in there this long under these ever worsening conditions is amazing, but the "Big One" is coming shortly... Movie going and other non-essentials are the first to suffer, and the last to recover, so "Bette" is also right on: it IS going to be a bumpy ride, boys... Just wait til you get a gander at your heating costs this upcoming winter!... Thank you Mr. Bush and assorted other thieves...
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 01 Sep 2005 21:02 #10902

  • rodeojack
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I grew up in a paper mill town. Every so often, the union there would go out on strike, which tended to lower the incomes of most local businesspeople...

... except the theatres.

During the strikes, MORE people went to the movies for a temporary reprieve from the problems in their lives.

The local theatre owners weathered these economic storms just fine.

As with everything else lately, it's going to take some time to see how anything will really effect our business. I don't think the downturn in attendance is going to be a permanent problem. I also wonder if high gas prices might just keep more people closer to home. It might not be great for tourism-dependent towns, but the local entertainment industry might rediscover their niches.
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 01 Sep 2005 22:53 #10903

  • puzzlegut
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Speaking of heating costs, has any one considered alternative fuels? We are very seriously looking at putting in a corn burning furnace or boiler at our single screen. Based on current natural gas prices and corn at an estimated $2.00 a bushel (which is a high estimate at this time for our area), our heating bill would be cut about in half. Not to mention the furnace could also burn wheat, rye, cherry pits, and wood pellets. Depending on which route we go, we are looking at anywhere from $5,000 to $8,000 to install it, but fuel prices are going to continue going up, and anywhere we can save money is good. And we would be using 100% renewable energy that is produced right here in the good old USA in about 4 months.
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 01 Sep 2005 23:08 #10904

  • RoxyVaudeville
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Puzzelgut

I'm curious what brand of corn burner you are considering? Two years ago I considered the same move, but couldn't find a corn burner large enough for a building the size of a 600 seat theatre. The fuel would be plentiful and entremely cheap, especially since my brother is a farmer who raises a great deal of corn. I could pay him twice as much as he can get on the open market, and yet cut my heating cost in half as well.

Using a corn burner is just as easy to use as a coal furnace, but finding one that can supply a commercial building has been beyond my ability thus far, so please inform me and all of us what you have found.
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 02 Sep 2005 00:55 #10905

  • outaframe
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ROXY, check the "wood heat augmentation" thread in the Back Office section from last December... I found you one up to 500K BTU hour, which oughta be large enough for your place... 300K BTU gas boiler handles mine (with ease) which used to be 500 seats (5,000 sq ft building)...
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 02 Sep 2005 10:20 #10906

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The website www.year-a-round.com/corn_burning_furnace.html
has corn burning furnaces and boilers up to 950,000 btu's. We were looking at possibly putting in two smaller units because of space limitations though. Other than that, all I did was do a search for "corn furnace" and start looking through some of the web pages.
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 02 Sep 2005 13:43 #10907

  • outaframe
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That's the same outfit I found... PUZ, a single unit will be more efficient than 2 seperate units, IF you can fit it in somehow...
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 02 Sep 2005 22:13 #10908

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Here is another reason to consider purchasing a corn burning furnace. The following came from www.ruralenergyproducts.com/ .

Buy Now for Immediate Discount Under the Renewable Energy Security Act
The recent passage of the Renewable Energy Security Act (RESA) means an outstanding opportunity for you to save money! You can receive an immediate consumer discount of 25% (up to $3,000) on the purchase of an energy efficient biomass heating system – i.e., stoves, fireplace inserts, furnaces, and boilers fueled by renewable energy sources such as wood pellets. In addition, residents of certain counties may be eligible for a $500 tax credit when they replace their old wood stoves with new models that meet EPA air quality standards.

Energy Bill - Q & A
How Will the Energy Bill Impact the Hearth Industry?

Note: the questions and answers below were prepared by the Hearth, Patio and Barbeque Association shortly before President Bush signed the energy bill into law. Call us at Rural Energy Products for detailed information about how the tax credits and buying incentives can benefit your purchase of an efficient and environmentally friendly heating product which burns renewable energy sources such as wood, wood pellets or corn.

The U.S. House passed a comprehensive energy bill in late April and the Senate followed by passing a different version in late June. The differences between the two bills must now be reconciled and approved by a Conference Committee before full passage. Both the House and the Senate will appoint members to the Conference Committee with the goal of producing one bill that satisfies the legislative goals of each chamber.

This year's energy legislation contains some important provisions that could significantly impact the hearth industry. Below are some Q & A about the energy policy process and the specific legislative provisions that could affect hearth industry.

Q. What is the Renewable Energy Security Act (RESA) provision? Is it only for pellet appliances?

A. The RESA provision, authored by Rep. Charles Bass (R-NH), is specifically designed to encourage consumers to purchase pellet heating systems - i.e., stoves, furnaces, and boilers. The RESA would provide for an immediate consumer discount of 25% (not to exceed $3,000) on the price of a pellet appliance, including installation. The retailer or the manufacturer (not currently specified in the legislation) will then submit proof of sale to the Department of Energy for a refund. The RESA requires an annual appropriation from Congress, through 2010, and will be managed by the Department of Energy. The RESA is designed specifically to promote pellet appliances and requires qualified appliances to meet a 75% thermal efficiency rating.

Q. What is the difference between the RESA and the national tax credit for wood stove changeouts?

A. In late June, Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT), Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee, attached an amendment to the energy bill (SA 800, H.R. 6) that allows consumers living in PM 2 .s and PMio non-attainment zones to receive a $500 tax credit if they replace their old wood stoves. The tax credit becomes effective once the President signs the bill and would be valid through December 31, 2008. The RESA does not require the removal of any old appliance, but does require an annual appropriation from Congress. On the other hand, the tax credit amendment does require the removal of an old appliance and does not require an annual appropriation.

Q. What products qualify for the changeout tax credit?

A. The tax credit is specific for consumers that are removing old stoves and replacing them with stoves that "comply with EPA emission performance standards." HPBA will be working with staff on the Senate Finance Committee to determine if the definition is broad enough to include pellet stoves and gas appliances that are typically exempt from EPA emission performance standards testing.

Q. Is the tax credit restricted geographically? What are the limitations?

A. The tax credit is available only to consumers that live in non-attainment zones. To view a list of counties that are currently in non-attainment, visit: http://www.hpba.orq/govrelations/NonAttainmentListingApril2005.xls. The tax credit is only available through the 2008 tax year and expires on January 1, 2009.

Q. What is the likelihood of the energy bill's passage?

A. Many controversial issues beyond the interests of the hearth industry will ultimately determine the energy bill's fate. The House and Senate bills are vastly different on a number of sensitive political issues - e.g., liability protection for producers of MTBE, a gasoline additive that has caused environmental problems, drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and climate change, to name a few. If the lawmakers can agree on how to address these issues both politically and economically, then they will likely be able to pass the bill in conference.

Q. When is the Conference Committee Expected to Meet?

A. The House and Senate are expected to nominate representatives to the Conference Committee in July. The conferees are likely to meet as soon as possible. The White House is pushing lawmakers to finish energy legislation before the month-long Congressional recess in August.

Q. Who will be on the Conference Committee?

A. The Conference Committee will be chaired by Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX), Chairman of the House Energy & Commerce Committee. Each chamber will nominate lawmakers to the Conference Committee from both parties. Once the conferees are named, HPBA/PFI will inform members and encourage advocacy to these lawmakers.

Q. What is the timeline for the bill?

A. Congress is hoping to work through the issues and finish the energy legislation before the August Congressional recess, but some have speculated that it could take a few months to address all the contentious issues.

Q. How will HPBA publicize the results if the RESA and tax credit provisions are included in the final passage?

A. HPBA will be working with local affiliates and using the trade's traditional media and issuing broadcast emails and faxes to members if the measure(s) become law.

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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 06 Sep 2005 20:23 #10909

  • BurneyFalls
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In reply to the original post, I am hoping my business might increase since my towns are 57 and 75 miles from any other competition. The bigger towns may lose some of us rural folk though. I was going to take the trek today, but decided against it simply for the cost of gas.
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 10 Sep 2005 16:16 #10910

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, helvetica">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by outaframe:
Yer 'ol uncle was a savvy dude... How the economy has hung in there this long under these ever worsening conditions is amazing, but the "Big One" is coming shortly... Movie going and other non-essentials are the first to suffer, and the last to recover, so "Bette" is also right on: it IS going to be a bumpy ride, boys... Just wait til you get a gander at your heating costs this upcoming winter!... Thank you Mr. Bush and assorted other thieves...<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Our economy has hung in there the last 10 or 12 years due to the ever increasing consumer debt. This debt is largely entertainment debt, i.e. vacations, eating out, video rentals, Xbox, PlayStation, Internet and many others. Bankruptcy is at an all time high and this is due to their inability to live within there means. Charging Egg McMuffins at 12-18%. As for gasoline, most of the world has been paying much higher prices than we have for many years. We do not appear to have the ability to curtail our consumption nor entice the major car manufacturers to make vehicles that get over 20 miles to gallon. That coupled with China and India coming into their "consumerism" has increased the numbers at the pump. America is no longer the big pig at the pump. No matter who is in the White House that will not change.


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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 10 Sep 2005 19:00 #10911

  • Mike
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Let's talk gas and not corn in this thread. I'll start another " other heat" thread.

I have already had people say to me: "the next theatres are 45, 30, and 55 and we ain't going there any more."

A round trip for a car that gets 25 to the gal: do the math. Our theatre just got a whoile lot more attractive to travelers.



Michael Hurley
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 12 Sep 2005 09:23 #10912

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I just had a very dismal weekend. I don't know if the gas prices figured into the equation or not, but one theatre playing Must Love Dogs had only 81 patrons for the entire weekend. The other, playing Red Eye, had only 107. Pretty hard to pay expenses on that.

For me, yesterday was the first time I have gone to the gas station, used my credit card at the pump, and the pump shut itself off at $50.00. My tank wasn't even filled up. That was an eye opener for me.

I now think these gas prices, if they don't go down, will negatively affect many of us. I want to change my response on the survey.
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 13 Sep 2005 13:45 #10913

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Gas prices here in connecticut have leveled off now and are slightly coming back down. Prices were as high as $3.56 a gallon for regular and are now down to around $3.30
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Re: How Will $4.00 a Gallon Gas Effect Our Business? 13 Sep 2005 16:52 #10914

  • RoxyVaudeville
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Gas prices here in Northampton, Pa. at the station I patronize topped at $3.29 for regular and have now come down to $2.79. It was and is higher at other stations, but a 50 cent drop is certainly welcome regardless of the price we were paying. Lets hope it continues to come down.
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