News Release Header
For Immediate Release:
August 24, 2012
Media Contact:
Alejandra Castro-Núñez
acastro@miamidade.gov
305-375-4942

Miami-Dade County is ready to beat price gouging


(MIAMI, August 24, 2012) – Miami-Dade County’s Office of Emergency Management is monitoring Tropical Storm “Isaac” in the Atlantic Ocean and Miami-Dade County is currently in the 3-day forecast.  To beat potential price gouging during an emergency, a team of enforcement officers from the Consumer Protection Section of the Department of Regulatory and Economic Resources (RER), Business Affairs Division has documented the average prices of a sampling of essential commodities, such as ice, coolers, generators, flashlights, batteries, chainsaws, and plywood.  The countywide survey was completed to create a baseline from which to investigate price-gouging complaints in the event that a State of Emergency is declared.

Avg. Commodity Prices for Miami-Dade County from 6/1/2012

Category: Building & Roofing Supplies

Commodity

Avg price

Min price

Max price

Sample size

Roof Cement/Bull (1 Gallon)

$11.87

$9.00

$16.80

8

Roof Cement/Bull (5 Gallons)

$37.32

$29.99

$44.35

9

Roof Felt (30 ASTM D-226)

$28.20

$24.14

$30.69

4

Roof Felt (30 ASTM D-226)

$28.31

$19.99

$38.47

5

Category: Consumables

Commodity

Avg price

Min price

Max price

Sample size

Charcoal

$8.36

$3.49

$12.99

78

Ice

$2.48

$1.19

$3.89

19

Ice (8-10 Pounds)

$2.74

$1.89

$2.99

8

Whole Milk ( 1Gallon)

$4.51

$2.99

$6.29

32

Whole Milk (1/2 Gallon)

$3.12

$2.28

$4.39

31

Category: Home Shelter Supplies

Commodity

Avg price

Min price

Max price

Sample size

Duct Tape

$6.44

$1.89

$13.49

50

Lumber (2 X 4 X 12 Board)

$5.78

$4.29

$7.79

9

Lumber (2 X 4 X 16 Board)

$7.73

$5.97

$10.49

7

Lumber (2 X 4 X 8 Board)

$3.76

$2.64

$5.99

14

Lumber (4 X 4 X 8 Board)

$8.56

$6.77

$9.99

7

Masking Tape

$4.10

$.77

$12.20

47

Plywood (4 X 8 X 1/2)

$18.94

$16.07

$24.97

7

Plywood (4 X 8 X 3/4)

$26.23

$20.99

$32.47

9

Plywood (4 X 8 X 5/8)

$22.30

$18.99

$31.37

7

Tapcon 1/4 (3.25 inch Length) - (100 Count)

$26.55

$11.49

$42.99

13

Tapcon 3/16 (2.75 inch Length) - (100 Count)

$16.15

$8.49

$23.99

13

Tapon

$21.38

$10.99

$28.99

8

Tapon 3/16

$18.45

$9.99

$28.99

11

Category: Household Supplies

Commodity

Avg price

Min price

Max price

Sample size

Alkaline Batteries (9 Volt)

$8.37

$3.49

$19.49

70

Alkaline Batteries (6 Volt) - 1 Battery per Package

$8.25

$2.88

$12.99

37

Alkaline Batteries (AA)

$6.75

$1.99

$16.19

80

Alkaline Batteries (AAA)

$6.86

$2.49

$18.39

83

Alkaline Batteries (C)

$6.82

$2.49

$14.99

78

Alkaline Batteries (D)

$8.23

$2.39

$17.49

70

Bleach

$2.74

$1.29

$6.99

42

Bottled Propane Fuel

$4.51

$2.86

$8.49

30

Cooler (24-48 Quarts)

$30.05

$3.99

$49.99

30

Cooler (Greater than 48 Quarts)

$58.34

$20.99

$99.99

14

Corded Circular Saw ( 7 1/4 Blade)

$101.75

$36.57

$179.99

32

Corded Power Drill (3/8 Variable)

$54.40

$21.99

$132.99

32

Cordless Power Drill (3/8 Variable)

$96.56

$19.88

$241.65

38

Electric Chain Saw - 16 inch Blade

$74.08

$49.99

$77.95

8

Flashlight w/Batteries (Standard Hand-Held)

$9.09

$2.00

$29.99

65

Flashlight Standard Handheld w/o Batteries

$14.46

$1.29

$29.82

52

Gas Chain Saw (14 inch Blade)

$178.65

$109.00

$339.95

9

Gas Chain Saw (16 inch Blade)

$197.25

$139.00

$609.95

19

Gas Chain Saw (18 inch Blade)

$233.91

$159.00

$559.95

12

Gas Chain Saw (20 inch Blade)

$251.72

$199.00

$399.00

12

Generator Electric Start (4000-7550 Watts)

$832.38

$499.00

$2,199.00

13

Generator Electric Start (7551 to 10000 Watts)

$1,349.00

$1,349.00

$1,349.00

1

Generator Pull Start (1800 to 3999 Watts)

$309.66

$279.99

$369.00

9

Generator Pull Start (4000 to 7550 Watts)

$693.32

$599.99

$749.99

3

Generators Electric Start (1800-3999 Watts)

$709.28

$299.99

$1,859.00

7

Lantern (Florescent w/Battery)

$17.64

$4.99

$29.99

21

Lantern (Propane)

$40.40

$19.99

$99.00

14

Metal Extension Ladder (24 Feet)

$170.70

$99.00

$249.00

10

Metal Ladder (6-8 Feet)

$80.80

$43.00

$219.00

30

Propane (Refillable 20 lb. Tank)

$22.21

$17.50

$29.99

7

Propane Camping Stove (2 Burner)

$39.07

$22.99

$64.99

20

Sterno Fuel

$4.70

$2.00

$7.99

22

Tarps

$50.94

$4.99

$169.00

33

Wet/Dry Vacuums (8-16 Gallons)

$80.75

$44.99

$159.00

17


A state of emergency may be declared by the Governor, the County Mayor, the Board of County Commissioners, or the Director of the Miami-Dade Police Department, immediately triggering anti-price gouging regulations.

Under normal circumstances, price regulation is prohibited under Florida law.  During a state of emergency, anti-price gouging provisions in both state and local laws are activated to prevent individuals and retailers from indiscriminately charging exorbitant prices simply because demand is high during a disaster.   If a price gouging complaint is filed during a state of emergency, enforcement officers compare the asking price of goods to the price listed during the preceding 30-day period to determine whether a provider of goods has taken advantage of consumers.

If consumers believe a retailer has violated price gouging rules after a state of emergency has been declared, they should call the County’s 311 Answer Center by dialing 3-1-1 or RER’s  Business Affairs Division’s Consumer Protection Section  at 305-375-3677.