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"It hit our business fairly hard," Morris says.
Now, the surcharge rises and falls based on the price of diesel gas. This time around, he says, Capriotti’s won’t suffer. "We heavily negotiated a sliding scale."
Feb. 19 » In last week’s Small Talk column, The Associated Press erroneously reported that President Barack Obama was proposing a $1 million exemption for the federal estate tax and a tax rate of 55 percent for amounts above that threshold. Obama actually proposed a $3.5 million exemption and a tax rate of 45 percent.
Delivery dilemma • Companies that make deliveries are also hurting. Ricky Eisen’s catering business in New York has two trucks and a van. She used to pay $40 to $60 a day for gas for each truck. Now it costs her $72 to $76. And she pays more to vendors for deliveries.
"I’m getting squeezed at both ends," says Eisen, owner of Between the Bread. "It’s enough to cut a dent in the profit."
Eisen held out for a long time — until March 2011 — before she began tacking on fuel surcharges for her deliveries. She has charged 5 percent extra. Now, she says, "I’m thinking as fuel prices rise, I’m going to have to increase the percentage. Right now, I want to keep it where it is."
Joyce Rosenberg writes about small business for the Associated Press
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