Beshear issues consumer protection order activating price gouging statute

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Kentucky Press News Service

After multiple tornadoes and severe storms caused heavy damage across the state, Gov. Steve Beshear Saturday signed a consumer protection executive order at the request of Attorney General Jack Conway to implement Kentucky’s price-gouging laws statewide as of Friday, March 2.

The executive order will allow for investigation into any complaints of price gouging that may occur relative to gas, building supplies, hotels and other goods and services in the aftermath of the weekend’s storms, according to a Saturday press release from the governor’s office.

“We expect damage assessments and cleanup to continue for a while, and our families need to be protected from unscrupulous vendors,” Beshear said. “With gas prices already painfully high, activating the price-gouging laws now ensures Kentuckians are protected from predatory pricing as the state recovers from this disaster.”

“I appreciate Gov. Beshear triggering the price-gouging provision,” Conway said. “This law helps protect consumers during emergencies because it stops businesses from raising prices on things people need to weather a storm or cleanup from a natural disaster. I encourage anyone with specific information regarding possible price-gouging to email pricecomplaints@ag.ky.gov or call my Consumer Protection Hotline at 888-432-9257.”

More than two dozen tornadoes have been reported in Kentucky since Wednesday, with the most significant damage coming late Friday afternoon. Eighteen deaths have been reported to the Kentucky Department of Public Health, as well as about 300 injuries.