Second Regular Session 112th General Assembly (2002)
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HOUSE ENROLLED ACT No. 1015
AN ACT to amend the Indiana Code concerning state offices and administration.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Indiana:
SOURCE: IC 4-6-9.1; (02)HE1015.1.1. -->
SECTION 1. IC 4-6-9.1 IS ADDED TO THE INDIANA CODE AS
A NEW CHAPTER TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE UPON
Chapter 9.1. Price Gouging in Declared Emergencies
Sec. 1. (a) Sections 1 through 7 of this chapter apply to the
period during which an emergency is declared and the twenty-four
(24) hours before the declaration by the governor under
IC 10-4-1-7 or IC 10-4-1-7.1.
(b) The definitions in IC 10-4-1-3 apply to this chapter.
Sec. 2. For purposes of this chapter, "price gouging" means
charging a consumer an unconscionable amount for the sale of fuel.
Price gouging occurs if:
(1) the amount charged grossly exceeds the average price at
which fuel was readily obtainable within the retailer's trade
area during the seven (7) days immediately before the
declaration of emergency; and
(2) the increase in the amount charged is not attributable to
cost factors to the retailer, including replacement costs, taxes,
and transportation costs incurred by the retailer.
Sec. 3. The attorney general has the following powers and duties
regarding price gouging:
(1) To investigate complaints received claiming price gouging.
(2) To seek injunctive relief as appropriate.
(3) To seek restitution for victims of price gouging.
(4) To institute an action to levy and collect a civil penalty.
Sec. 4. (a) Information obtained during the attorney general's
investigation under this chapter, including information from a
person who responds to the investigation and designates the
information as confidential, must be maintained as confidential
until the investigation is completed by the attorney general and a
course of action is determined. The attorney general may not make
known in any manner any information obtained in the course of
the investigation to persons other than those specified in subsection
(c). Once the investigation is completed, if there is an agreed upon
settlement or if charges are filed, the information becomes public.
(b) The attorney general shall make available to the public,
upon request, aggregate information concerning complaints of
price gouging. The aggregate data may not identify particular
persons or locations under investigation.
(c) For purposes of this section, references to the attorney
general include other individuals designated in writing and acting
on behalf of the attorney general during the investigation. A person
designated shall preserve the confidentiality of information under
(d) A person who is served with a request for information, a
subpoena to give testimony orally or in writing, or a request or
order to produce books, papers, correspondence, memoranda,
agreements, or other documents or records under this chapter may
apply to any court for protection against abuse or hardship.
Sec. 5. If an investigation by the attorney general results in a
finding of price gouging, the attorney general may bring an action
in a circuit or superior court with jurisdiction in the county where
the price gouging allegedly occurred. If the court finds that the
retailer engaged in price gouging, the court may assess a civil
penalty against the retailer. The civil penalty may not be more than
one thousand dollars ($1,000) per transaction.
Sec. 6. Civil penalties collected under section 6 of this chapter
must be deposited in the state general fund.
Sec. 7. This chapter preempts the power of local governments to
regulate pricing of commodities under a declaration of emergency:
(1) under IC 10-4-1-7;
(2) under IC 10-4-1-7.1; or
(3) by a local government.
SOURCE: ; (02)HE1015.1.2. -->
SECTION 2. An emergency is declared for this act.
HEA 1015 _ Concur
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