Senator David Carlucci (D-Rockland/Orange) today reported getting complaints from residents that some Rockland gas stations are involved in alleged price gouging. Carlucci’s office said complaints had been received on Wednesday about stations in Valley Cottage and Nyack charging $5 and $5.15 per gallon, considerably above the average per gallon cost in Rockland.
“It is unacceptable for any gas station operator to engage in the illegal practice of price gouging, especially during a time when residents have sustained incredible loss and damage,” said Carlucci. “People are experiencing enough pain right now and the last thing they need is more pain at the pump.”
Carlucci noted that in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, gasoline prices are susceptible to illicit activity in Rockland as anywhere else. With some stations running out of gas, customers lined up on Wednesday looking to fill their car tanks and to get fuel to run generators.
One resident said that she went to the Valley Cottage Getty on Route 303 and Storms road.
"$4.059/gal regular posted, pumps programmed for $4.999/gal," she said. "When confronted, they said that is the price today. I persisted and the guy said due to demand they raised the price to $5.00 and If I didn't want gas at that price don't buy gas. I said I was going to report them for gouging and he offered me gas for $4.02/gal. I said all I want from him is to know how many people he already ripped off."
Any Rockland County residents who suspect price gouging at any gas stations should contact Senator Carlucci’s office at (845) 623-3627 or email email@example.com. Residents should also call the state Attorney General’s Consumer Fraud Bureau at 800-771-7755.
In 2011, Carlucci co-sponsored legislation (S.603) that would prohibit gasoline prices from being adjusted at the pump multiple times daily on the same lot of gasoline, which was purchased wholesale at a fixed price. This would result in a civil fine of up to $500 dollars.