Fuel rate increase rumors just a gas

Texas Attorney General John Cornyn announced Tuesday that his office will respond to price-gouging complaints from Texas consumers against retail gasoline stations, motels, hotels and other businesses across the state that provide transportation, shelter and related necessities. Brady, like other Central Texas towns, fell victim to the rumor of gasoline prices reaching as much as $6 per gallon in places like Brownwood, San Angelo and as far away as Denison, Sherman and even Oklahoma City. Hundreds of residents lined up at virtually every gasoline station throughout Brady Tuesday night filling up their gas tanks, “just in case.” “I heard it from a relative that actually saw the prices in Denison, so I am not taking any chances,” said Jim Lynch, an insurance salesman in Brady on business. “I only needed seven gallons, but I am just being careful.” In a matter of hours, lines at the pumps reached as many as 10 to 15 cars. At one station alone, the manager reported selling several hundred gallons in only a matter of minutes. In response to the rumors and reported incidents, this statement was issued early Wednesday morning by the Attorney General’s office. “Price-gouging in the wake of Tuesday’s disasters in New York City and Washington, D.C., is illegal and violates the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act,” said Attorney General Cornyn. “Legal action can and will be taken by the Office of the Attorney General to enforce the law and protect Texans from such despicable business practices.” Persons who feel they have been victimized by price-gouging can fill out a consumer complaint form on the Attorney General’s website or contact the Office of the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at 800/337-3928 or 800/252-8011. Cornyn’s announcement followed an executive order from Gov. Rick Perry declaring a limited-purpose disaster for the state of Texas to combat price-gouging resulting from the closures of all Texas airports and the demands for alternate means of transportation, shelter and other services. “I join with Governor Perry today in invoking all necessary protections and remedies under the law to protect the citizens of Texas from those who would use their businesses to engage in price-gouging at the expense of vulnerable consumers,” said Attorney General Cornyn.

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