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State Senator

Donald E. Williams, Jr.

President Pro Tempore

Representing Brooklyn, Canterbury, Killingly, Mansfield, Putnam, Scotland, Thompson & Windham

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Contact: Adam Joseph

March 27, 2012

Williams and Donovan: General Assembly to Vote Today on Plan to Provide Relief at the Gas Pump

Democrats’ plan strengthens protections against price gouging, puts a circuit breaker on the gross receipts tax, and requires that savings are passed on to consumers

The Democratic Leaders of the General Assembly will introduce and vote later today on a proposal that will help provide relief at the pump and protect consumers from profiteering and price gouging by big oil wholesalers.

“With the price of gasoline skyrocketing and the summer driving season around the corner, we are taking action to provide relief at the pump and protect consumers from price gouging,” said Senate President Donald E. Williams, Jr. (D—Brooklyn). “Our proposal strengthens price gouging laws, puts a circuit breaker on the gross receipts tax, and requires that savings are passed along to consumers and not pocketed by oil companies.”

“We are taking steps to protect consumers from rising gas prices. We’re lowering the price they’ll pay to fill their tanks and calling on the big oil companies to be responsible,” said House Speaker Christopher G. Donovan (D-Meriden). “This plan will provide some relief and protect them from irresponsible profiteering.”

The Democrats’ proposal:

  1. Legislatively declares a 30-day period of petroleum market scrutiny by the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and the Department of Consumer Protection in anticipation of further wholesale price spikes.
  2. Amends the petroleum profiteering statute (C.G.S. § 42-234 et seq.) to provide for investigations of price gouging whenever the wholesale price rises by 15 percent or more within 90 days (the wholesale price has increased 40 cents—more than 15 percent—in the past ninety days).
  3. Grants the commissioner of the Department of Consumer Protection authority to impose Unfair Trade Practice fines on large gasoline wholesalers and distributors who are in violation of profiteering laws.
  4. Puts a permanent circuit breaker on the gross receipts tax (GRT) on motor fuels at $3.00/per gallon wholesale, upon passage.
  5. Prohibits oil wholesalers and distributors (those who pay the gross receipts tax) from passing on anything purporting to be based on the tax for the portion of any sales price over $3.00 per gallon.
  6. Institutes similar profiteering protections in regards to home heating oil.

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Hartford, CT 06106-1591

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