TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) _ Attorney General Pam Bondi has activated the state’s price gouging hotline for people living in five counties affected by severe weather and flooding.
Bondi announced the hotline would be in operation starting Friday for Dixie, Hillsborough, Pasco, Pinellas and Taylor counties.
Gov. Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency in those five counties.
State law prohibits extreme increases in the price of essential commodities needed as a direct result of a declared emergency.
The list includes food, water, hotels, ice, gasoline lumber and equipment.
Violators of the price gouging statute are subject to civil penalties of $1,000 per violation and up to a total of $25,000 for multiple violations committed in a single 24-hour period.
Anyone who suspects price gouging can report it to Bondi’s office by calling 1-866-966-7226.