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Attorney General Paxton warns Texans about price gouging after Hanna

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Posted at 11:12 AM, Jul 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-29 12:12:38-04

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton warned Texans today about price gouging after Hurricane Hanna made landfall on July 25.

"Under state law, once the governor issues a declaration, vendors are prohibited from charging exorbitant prices for necessities such as drinking water, food, batteries, generators, towing, clothing, medical supplies, lodging, repair work and fuel during and after the crisis," says a press release from Paxton.

Price gouging, which is illegal, is often an issue following a natural disaster and Paxton wants residents to know that they plan to punish offenders.

“Natural disasters can pull communities together. Unfortunately, they can also pull in unscrupulous individuals looking to scam vulnerable citizens,” said Attorney General Paxton. “As our communities work to rebuild and recover, my office will continue to aggressively prevent disaster scams and stands ready to prosecute any price-gouger who takes advantage of Texans.”

On top of being illegal, price gouging has more intense penalties under the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act.

Complaint can be reported at (800) 621-0508 or filed online here.

In preparation for Hurricane Hanna, Governor Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration for the counties of Aransas, Bee, Bexar, Brazoria, Brooks, Calhoun, Cameron, Dimmit, Duval, Fort Bend, Galveston, Goliad, Harris, Hidalgo, Jackson, Jim Hogg, Jim Wells, Kenedy, Kleberg, La Salle, Live Oak, Matagorda, McMullen, Nueces, Refugio, San Patricio, Starr, Victoria, Webb, Wharton, Willacy, and Zapata.