LOS ANGELES - People filling up at the downtown Los Angeles Chevron off of Alameda woke up to gas prices under $8 a gallon, a few cents cheaper than what it was just a day ago after FOX 11 reported the station was charging over $8 a gallon.
FOX 11 was asked to leave the property when we approached staffers to ask why gas was so much more expensive here than anywhere else.
We also approached the owners of another station nearby, a Shell in Chinatown, to ask why their gas was over $7 a gallon, which is over the average of both LA County and California, and close to what the Chevron off of Alameda is now charging.
Off-camera, the owner of the Shell says his rent is very high, due to his location, even though it is a small station. He didn’t get a break from COVID, he says, and can only accommodate four vehicles at a time.
"Give us a break" says Consumer Watchdog’s Jamie Court, who insists anything over $6 is still gouging, even in California with all its extra environmental requirements for fuel.
He is behind one of two bills making their way through California legislators in Washington, trying to hold gas companies accountable by strengthening the state’s anti-gouging law - which can’t even be applied unless the feds, state, or local governments declare a state of emergency.
We asked Gov. Gavin Newsom's office if he is planning to do that anytime soon. They released the following statement to FOX 11:
"The Governor is committed to providing relief for Californians who are facing higher costs, as reflected in the proposed $18.1 billion inflation relief package – negotiations with the legislature are ongoing." - Daniel Villasenor, Deputy Press Secretary Office of Gov. Gavin Newsom
The Consumer Fuel Price Gouging Prevention Act is partially sponsored by US Representative Katie Porter. It just passed the House of Representatives and aims to crack down on predatory prices on the pump.
Even if either passes, it will take some time for implementation.