Motorists in Iowa are paying, on average, $1.60 a gallon of gas. That’s according to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources’ monthly survey for regular unleaded fuel with a blend of 10% ethanol.

D.N.R,. Energy Policy Analyst Tommi Makila says the December 16th survey shows prices have dropped by 29-cents a gallon from a month ago and by $1.22 from one year ago. "We really haven’t seen prices like this since 2004," Makila said. In mid-July of this year, gas prices in Iowa topped the $4 mark. Makila says Iowans can thanks the recession for the low gas prices.

"As long as the economic news is bad, we’re sure to stay at a lower level," Makila said. There are signs that gas prices may be leveling off. Makila says OPEC had decided to cut production, which will eventually tighten the supply and demand equation and drive up prices.

According to this week’s D.N.R. survey, the cheapest gas can be found in Council Bluffs at $1.59 a gallon. The highest average price is in Iowa City, at $1.74.