Bipartisan Action Wednesday on Gas Prices

Legislature takes action on gas prices.

With the threat of gasoline costing $5 a gallon this summer, the Connecticut Legislature working in a bipartisan fashion, passed a proposal that will help provide relief at the pump and protect consumers from profiteering and price gouging by big oil wholesalers.

The plan strengthens protections against price gouging, cracks down on oil profiteering, places a circuit breaker on the gross receipts tax, and requires that savings are passed along to consumers.

This legislation will give some relief at the pump, but more importantly it puts big oil companies on notice that we won’t stand for price gouging and profiteering. High gas prices are burdening hard-working families and threatening to derail the economic recovery. We need to ensure any savings from this plan go to consumers and not to the pockets of big oil.

The 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 90 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.

We've taken some steps at the state level, now we need help from our federal colleagues to take on some of the issues outside of Connecticut.

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Hermann Zwergel April 02, 2012 at 04:34 PM
Ludicrous... why should drivers throughout the state subsidize wealthy Fairfield county train commuters regardless if they are going east or west?
Alex Tytler April 02, 2012 at 10:06 PM
Redistribution has to do with collecting gasoline and diesel tax from one group of people, and giving a large portion of it to another group of people. What happened with nat gas in the last 5 years is that they learned how to frack, which made alot of unrecoverable gas recoverable. The liquification facilites were built to go the other way, ie we were supposed to need to import gas, not export it. Now we are awash in gas to the point that companies arre stopping drilling it.
sebastian dangerfield April 02, 2012 at 11:27 PM
sebastian i think you may have an obsession with wealth? Not everyone who commutes by train is wealthy. not everyone who drives in fairfield county is poor. You might want to reconsider what you want to say. at this point, the only ludicrous thing is the way you contemplate the world.
Hermann Zwergel April 03, 2012 at 01:05 AM
Ludicrous..... NO ONE here said the following. Are you on drugs? Not everyone who commutes by train is wealthy. not everyone who drives in fairfield county is poor.
sebastian dangerfield April 03, 2012 at 05:07 AM
Sebastian, Im not sure if English is your native tongue. But, can you try to make your point again? I intepreted it that people who ride the trains are wealthy. That the 99% are those who drive. If that is not your point, can you explain your reference to the 99%? To the 'wealthy Fairfield County train commuters? Maybe you are not aware that train travel is mass transit. And for the most part Sebastian, mass transit is the mode of transport of the masses (get it sebasitan, mass transit.) Those who can afford to buy cars--they are the wealthy. My point is, that you make no sense. And that the only reason you seem to post is to try to make points about the wealthy. And that you , as a result, make no sense


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