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City expands crackdown on coronavirus price gouging

Posted: 11:06 PM, Mar 17, 2020
Updated: 2020-03-17 23:06:18-04

NEW YORK — New York City’s Department of Consumer and Worker Protection announced Tuesday it’s inspectors will now be issuing fines of up to $500 for price gouging related to an expanded group of goods and services designed to prevent or limit the spread of COVID-19.

Until now the department had only been targeting the sales of face masks, hand sanitizers, and disinfectant wipes. Now the list will include “any personal or household good or any service that is needed to prevent or limit the spread of or treat new COVID-19."

Price gouging is defined as increasing prices by more than 10% over normal. Violations carry a penalty of up to $500. The DCWP is inspecting stores based on consumer complaints.

If businesses complain about price increases from suppliers, they must provide proof to the department.

In Tuesday's report, Arnold Diaz followed a tip from a Bronx resident blowing the whistle on merchants in her neighborhood.

If you suspect price gouging, make sure to save the receipts and report the store by filing a complaint to nyc.gov/dcwp or contact 311 and say “overcharge”.

Contact PIX11's Arnold Diaz with any price gouging tips or story ideas.