County Clarifies Gas Pricing

         The Gloucester County Board of Chosen Freeholders, in conjunction with the Gloucester County Office of Consumer Affairs and the Division of Weights & Measures, wants to be sure consumers purchasing gasoline understand the statutes governing gas price increases as the southwest recovers from Hurricane Harvey. The law clearly states that price gouging during a state of emergency is illegal.  Additionally, the Office of Weights and Measures does not control gas prices.

       “We understand local residents may be bothered at the sudden rise in gas prices, but those prices are decided by many factors, including the closing of many refineries in the gulf coast region and market pressure from Wall Street.”  As numerous refineries come back online, there should be some relief on the horizon,”Freeholder Director Robert Damminger said.

          However, there are certain modifications service stations can and cannot do.  They cannot raise the price of gas more than once in a twenty-four hour period and they must post the price at the street and on the pump itself.  Gas stations today are not like the stations of years ago, now everything is electronic and computers monitor sales and pricing every hour of the day.

          “Consumers should remain vigilant and be sure to pay attention when purchasing any commodity.  When buying gas, consumers should always pay attention to ensure the meter has been set to all zeros before the pumping begins and to always get a receipt, even when paying cash, in case questions arise later,”Freeholder Lyman Barnes, Freeholder Liaison to the Office of Consumer Protection, said.

        The public can and should report any activity they think is suspicious to the County Office of Weights and Measures and if you have general questions, please contact the Office of Consumer Protection at 856-384-6855.