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Pa. Officials Warn Consumers About Weather-Related Price-Gouging

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(Snow shovels for sale.  File photo by KYW's Hadas Kuznits)

(Snow shovels for sale. File photo by KYW’s Hadas Kuznits)

(Capitol dome, Harrisburg, Pa.   File photo) Tony Romeo
  Tony Romeo is Harrisburg bureau chief for KYW Newsradio...
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By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — The Pennsylvania attorney general’s office says it is already getting reports of price gouging in the wake of this week’s ice storm.

The disaster emergency declared by Gov. Corbett (see related story) triggers provisions of the state’s anti-price-gouging law.

Joe Peters, a spokesman for attorney general Kathleen Kane, says the law extends not only to businesses involved in direct consumer sales but to manufacturers, wholesalers, and suppliers, and allows for fines of up to $10,000 per violation.

“There isn’t a specific threshold, but our Bureau of Consumer Protection will look at prices pre-weather-disaster and the prices being charged, and make that determination about gouging — and be very aggressive in protecting the consumer,” he said.

If you suspect price gouging is occurring, call the attorney general’s office at 1-800-441-2555, or you can file a complaint online at attorneygeneral.gov.

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