FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 9, 2005
CONTACT:DOACS Press Office Terence McElroy 850-488-3022
Bronson Asks Residents To Report Price Gouging
TALLAHASSEE – Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services
Commissioner Charles H. Bronson today urged state residents
to report any instances of price gouging to his department
in the wake of approaching Hurricane Dennis.
Under Florida law, it is unlawful to charge exorbitant or
excessive prices for essential items, including shelter,
gasoline, food, water, ice, generators or lumber, following
the declaration of an emergency, unless the increases in the
amount charged are attributable to additional costs incurred
Governor Jeb Bush declared an emergency earlier today,
triggering the activation of the price-gouging statute.
Individuals or businesses found to have engaged in price
gouging face fines of up to $1,000 per violation, or up to a
maximum fine of $25,000 a day.
“We’re asking consumers to come forward and let us know
if any retailers have exploited our citizens or are
profiteering from the approaching storm,” Bronson said.
“This activity is not only reprehensible, it’s illegal.
The price-gouging hotline will be staffed on Saturday and
Sunday during the day and citizens will also be able to
leave voice mails if they call in the evening. Every
complaint is investigated by the Department. Citizens are
asked to call 1-800-HELPFLA (1-800-435-7352) with any
reports of price-gouging.
# # #