20 Augusta-area gas stations involved in gouging probe

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ATLANTA — Twenty of the 166-plus gas stations under state scrutiny for price gouging during Georgia’s gas shortage are in metro Augusta, according to the Governor’s Office of Consumer Affairs.

But don’t expect sanctions against any of the stations to be leveled too soon. Shawn Conroy, a spokesman for the consumer affairs office, said that it might take more than six months for the agency to sort through the stations’ financial records and reach settlements with owners of each station found in violation of the state’s anti-gouging law.

Eleven of the stations are in Richmond County, and nine are in Columbia County, Mr. Conroy said. He could not say which stations are under investigation because the cases are ongoing.

Gov. Sonny Perdue enacted the anti-gouging law in late September after hurricanes disrupted production at refineries near the Gulf of Mexico, almost immediately driving up prices in Georgia. The law requires stations to maintain the same margin of profit on gas they sell before and after supplies are disrupted.

Penalties can range from $2,000 to $25,000, with the higher penalty typically assessed when disabled or elderly customers are involved, Mr. Conroy said.

After the hurricanes the state received more than 1,600 complaints about price gouging, with some reports of stations charging more than $9 a gallon. The state has subpoenaed sales records from more than 166 stations to date, Mr. Conroy said.

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coolette
10
Points
coolette 10/28/08 - 12:18 pm
0
0
How can we obtain the list?

How can we obtain the list? Perhaps we can choose other stations now that the crisis is over and affect their profit margin!! If we all work together we can make a difference!!!!

lovingthesouth72
1368
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lovingthesouth72 10/28/08 - 12:27 pm
0
0
If I have my receipts, can I

If I have my receipts, can I ger reimbursed for what they over charged?

Frank
3
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Frank 10/28/08 - 12:29 pm
0
0
There ya go, that's a great

There ya go, that's a great idea!! Lets condemn the store, cost people their jobs and hang 'em out to dry, all before the investigations are complete. Mob justice is the best justice...

kk19299
0
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kk19299 10/28/08 - 12:49 pm
0
0
Its not mob justice....we are

Its not mob justice....we are talking about a simple boycott and the owner and management should be held responsible for the actions of the employees who raised the prices and gouged the consumer.

thunder2whisky
0
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thunder2whisky 10/28/08 - 12:50 pm
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Frank you must work at one of

Frank you must work at one of these stores for that remark!

reruns
0
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reruns 10/28/08 - 12:52 pm
0
0
Give me the list too. There

Give me the list too. There are many places in Augusta that i don't patron to.

thunder2whisky
0
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thunder2whisky 10/28/08 - 12:55 pm
0
0
Many Americans never speak

Many Americans never speak out against the scams that show up and therefore never get acknowledged. The American Spirit for right and wrong should be kept alive.

lady_alessandra
0
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lady_alessandra 10/28/08 - 12:59 pm
0
0
only 20?? I think almost

only 20?? I think almost every gas station in Augusta was involved.

Frank
3
Points
Frank 10/28/08 - 01:12 pm
0
0
It's mob justice when you

It's mob justice when you boycott the business before the investigation has been completed. Just because the business is on "the list" doesn't necessarily mean they actually gouged anyone.. and no r2d2 I don't work for a gas company..

TEDDY1
0
Points
TEDDY1 10/28/08 - 01:20 pm
0
0
still got to have it

still got to have it regardless of what they do......let it go.......

MrsD
0
Points
MrsD 10/28/08 - 01:31 pm
0
0
It would still be nice to

It would still be nice to read "the list"... After what we went through to get gas a few weeks ago--that was just WRONG! As consumers we should have the right to see which gas stations were involved...

Fed UP with MCG
0
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Fed UP with MCG 10/28/08 - 01:39 pm
0
0
Print the List what harm is

Print the List what harm is it going to do? The only thing that if might do would be to shut them down or get new management involved!

Frank
3
Points
Frank 10/28/08 - 01:48 pm
0
0
I would agree that the

I would agree that the results of the investigations should be made public so that the public can decide how it wants to handle it's business with companies that treat it's patrons with little or no respect..

mable8
2
Points
mable8 10/28/08 - 01:50 pm
0
0
It would be nice if we could

It would be nice if we could have the list showing the gas station's location and the amount they over-charged. Consumers should have a means to collect the overage.

coolette
10
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coolette 10/28/08 - 02:09 pm
0
0
Good point!! Or the choice

Good point!! Or the choice to continue giving them our business!!

Just Asking
17
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Just Asking 10/28/08 - 02:15 pm
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The anti-gouging laws caused

The anti-gouging laws caused the shortages to begin with. With stations limited on the prices the ycould charge, every idiot flocked to the pumps to fill up when they got 1/4 a tank down. If prices are allowed to regulate themselves, they go up, people drive less, people buy less gas, and we don't have shortages. Nice to see that our "Republican" governor passed this law that "fixed" a problem that never existed in the past. Until this law, who remembers gas stations running out of gas in the last 25 years?

mable8
2
Points
mable8 10/28/08 - 03:11 pm
0
0
I found it interesting that

I found it interesting that gas stations began running out of gas at the pumps when our Gov issued the warning that the state would be watching for price gouging at the beginning of the crisis. It was the very next day that the yellow bags began showing up at the pumps.

augdowg
0
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augdowg 10/28/08 - 03:26 pm
0
0
I wonder how many tax dollars

I wonder how many tax dollars are being spent on the investigation ? Hummmm...we still pay !!!

elpi
0
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elpi 10/28/08 - 03:40 pm
0
0
In Va, they have already

In Va, they have already fined the stations who price-gouged! Augusta should make it swift and painful! Let the owners who lined their pockets figure out how to pay their employees!

brinehart7
0
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brinehart7 10/28/08 - 04:03 pm
0
0
IMHO we should know what

IMHO we should know what stations were involved so we the free people may have a choice of where we would like to spend our hard earned dollars.......

pofwe
5
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pofwe 10/28/08 - 04:10 pm
0
0
I wonder how this

I wonder how this investigation differs from other investigations. "He could not say which stations are under investigation because the cases are ongoing." How many times do you read or hear, "So and So are being investigated for this or that?"

thistownisunbelievable
1
Points
thistownisunbelievable 10/28/08 - 04:14 pm
0
0
Price controls don't work,

Price controls don't work, but actually cause the shortages we experienced a few weeks ago. The station owners feared the gouging laws, so they left the prices lower than supply/demand would have normally dictated and we ran out of gas. I hate to get all Econ 101 on you, but I guarantee we'd have had plenty of gas if stations had been allowed to charge $7 a gallon (we would have driven a lot less, I'll admit). If you aren't going to let the stations set the price at whatever amount you will willingly pay, the only other way to stop the panic is to limit the amount people can buy, i.e., rations. I don't think any of these options is all that great, but I would love to hear somebody on this board actually define 1) price gouging and 2) enlighten us all as to what gas "should" cost. You need a sensible yardstick if you are going to be able to determine if someone was actually "gouging." They are making a profit now--should we go after them for gouging?

FallingLeaves
27
Points
FallingLeaves 10/28/08 - 05:18 pm
0
0
Frank is right. The list

Frank is right. The list should come out AFTER the investigation.

hockeymann
226
Points
hockeymann 10/28/08 - 05:28 pm
0
0
They're still gouging us in

They're still gouging us in Richmond & Columbia counties, as compared to other areas in Georgia...EVEN TODAY AT $2.46,
ITS STILL HIGHER than other parts of Georgia...Why can't the
list be published? I doubt you'll ever see much in prosecutions,
as Perdue is as crooked as the gas companies himself...

thistownisunbelievable
1
Points
thistownisunbelievable 10/28/08 - 05:40 pm
0
0
Everybody grouses because

Everybody grouses because they actually have to pay for something, so they claim they are being "gouged." Get a smaller car, ride a bike or take the bus if you think the gas companies are so crooked. Nobody, repeat, nobody is forcing you to buy gas. On a related note, do you think your employer thinks he/she is being gouged by having to pay your salary?

shamrock
523
Points
shamrock 10/28/08 - 05:59 pm
0
0
Think this is gouging? Wait

Think this is gouging? Wait until the "steal from the rich, keep for yourself" Democraps get in full power!

disssman
6
Points
disssman 10/28/08 - 07:23 pm
0
0
Running a business, is the

Running a business, is the same as having a drivers license, they are both a priviledge. In that regard, if these owners are ever found guilty of the same offense then deny them a license. Or revoke their license until they go to remedial business operation training classes.

Just My Opinion
5707
Points
Just My Opinion 10/28/08 - 08:14 pm
0
0
Well, I'll go ahead and say

Well, I'll go ahead and say that one of the stations that was DEFINITELY gouging was the BP station on Wheeler Road. Their prices were way ahead of everyone else's on that road. I passed it everyday on my way to work at the hospital. I'll never go there to get gas...or coke, or snacks...nothing. If this post gets pulled, I'll enter another one with "code words" for BP.

MaryPlayer
0
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MaryPlayer 10/28/08 - 08:29 pm
0
0
Listen up! The state will

Listen up! The state will get the "fine" money. A small portion will be returned to customers by lower than low gas prices, so if you purchased from the gougers, you will have to purchase again if you are to receive a compensation. Or don't, it's up to you.

BOBO
0
Points
BOBO 10/28/08 - 09:15 pm
0
0
I know of a couple of chain

I know of a couple of chain lets say round with a letter that were suspect in the strong arm tactics at the pump. I emailed their headquarters, NO reply..Guess what no reply from me anymore. I shop local owned and operated gas stations and I will not go back even if they were cheaper. The locally owned stores have boomed because of this chain. lets boycott them, do not give then any bussiness make them give gas away.

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