OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) — California’s attorney general is warning residents to look out for and report price gouging amid wildfire evacuation orders.
Steeply increasing the cost of essentials – like housing, gas, food, and other supplies – is illegal when the area is under a state of emergency, Attorney General Rob Bonta said.
Generally, it’s illegal to raise the price by 10% or more than it was priced at prior to the state of emergency.
This law applies to those who sell food, emergency supplies, medical supplies, building materials, and gasoline. The law also applies to repair or reconstruction services, emergency cleanup services, transportation, freight and storage services, hotel accommodations, and rental housing. Exceptions to this prohibition exist if, for example, the price of labor, goods, or materials has increased for the business.Calif. AG Rob Bonta
Anyone who sees price gouging or has been a victim of it should file a complaint at this link with the attorney general’s office, or contact their local police or sheriff’s office.
Sellers discovered to be price gouging can face civil penalties or be criminally prosecuted.