NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Tri-State Area is still feeling the pain at the pump.

In New Jersey, the average price per gallon is $3.68, which is 5 cents below the national average.  In New York it’s more than $4, and in Connecticut it’s at $4.04.

But paying to fill up may actually be a little less painful this summer.

“It’s horrible, horrible, horrible because of the gas,” ice cream truck driver Joseph Deniro of Astoria told CBS 2’s Vanessa Murdock. “The [cost of] sprinkles, ice cream, cookies and cones have all gone up.”

Even Mister Softee has complaints about the cost of gas.  But it appears that there is actually some good news from the gas pump. At a time when the prices typically rise, they are forecast to drop.

“We saw the price of crude oil drop by $9 as of Monday, and that’s the highest one-week drop this year,” Robert Sinclair, Jr. of AAA said. “With it will come gasoline prices.”

“We are actually in the trucking business,” Robert Berman of Long Island City said. “And we’re hoping that that’s the case. We’d love to see it go down.”

The U.S. Energy Information Administration forecasts that the average gas price this summer will be $3.79 per gallon, 16 cents below the previous forecast.

Some analysts even suggest that $3 a gallon is attainable.

“I don’t believe it,” Johnny Portorreal of Jackson Heights said. “I have to see it to believe it.”

“Three dollars a gallon would probably mean a drop in the price of crude oil by another $30,” Sinclair said. “Whether or not it’s going to happen would be a surprise to me, to be honest with you.”

There are just too many factors that affect the price of crude oil, Sinclair said.

“We’re going  into the hurricane season, which is June 1,” Sinclair said. “And remember back in 2005 — with Hurricanes Katrina and Rita — what that did to crude oil prices and gasoline prices. So place your bets and roll the dice.”

Realistically, he said that New Yorkers will be paying less, but not $3 per gallon.

“We’ll probably see gasoline drop below $4 a gallon,” Sinclair added, “and maybe $3.85 to $3.90 in our region.”

Lower prices should arrive just in time for Memorial Day Weekend. By the end of the month, filling up in New Jersey may cost less than $3.50 a gallon, while prices in Connecticut will likely be closer to $3.80, Sinclair said.

Do you believe that $3 a gallon for gas in our area is actually possible? Offer your thoughts and comments in the section below…

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