TALLAHASSEE – As Florida and its residents continue to recover from the devastating impacts of Hurricane Ian, the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association (FRLA) today issued a stern message for the hospitality industry: there is absolutely no tolerance for price gouging.
“Florida is known for having such a wonderful and accommodating hospitality industry,” said Carol Dover, President and CEO of FRLA. “It is absolutely unacceptable for anyone in this industry to take advantage of this historic emergency event for profit. That is not who we are as an industry or state, and price gouging will not be tolerated.”
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “Florida’s price gouging laws remain in effect and cover commodities related to post-storm recovery – including essentials such as lodging for displaced Floridians and first responders who traveled from across the state to live amid the destruction and help survivors as they rebuild. We will aggressively investigate allegations of extreme price increases to protect Floridians and first responders doing everything they can to help us recover from this devastating storm.”
For anyone who suspects price gouging, report it to the Office of the Attorney General by calling 1-866-9-NO-SCAM (1-866-966-7226), filing online at MyFloridaLegal.com. 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. In addition to the civil penalties for price gouging, state law criminalizes the sale of goods and services to the public without possession of a business tax receipt.