Legislation sponsored by State Senator Charles Fuschillo (8th Senate District) that would increase penalties for gasoline stations and other businesses convicted of price gouging was approved by the State Senate today. The measure would raise the maximum fine for price gouging from $10,000 to $25,000.
"In the fall of 2005, the affects of Hurricane Katrina were felt right here in New York State in the form of price gouging by a number of gas stations that used the tragedy to take advantage of New Yorkers at the pumps," said Senator Fuschillo, Chairman of the Senate's Consumer Protection Committee. "Increasing the maximum fine for price gouging will serve as a major financial disincentive for gas stations and other businesses to engage in this unlawful practice in the future and will better protect New York consumers."
Senator Fuschillo first introduced this legislation in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, when more than 2,000 New York residents reported potential price gouging at the pump. An investigation by then-Attorney General Eliot Spitzer revealed that 15 service stations in New York State, including two in Senator Fuschillo’s district, were indeed unlawfully charging consumers excessively high prices
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