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Extended California Price-Gouging Protections Could Affect Self-Storage, Other Services

An affiliate of self-storage real estate investment trust and third-party management firm Public Storage Inc. was charged $140,000 in penalties last month for violating California’s price-gouging restrictions in the aftermath of the October 2017 wildfires. Now governor Gavin Newsom has extended the state’s price-gouging protections for another year, which can affect the pricing of self-storage and other services in several counties.

Newsom signed an executive order on Monday extending emergency regulations that began after the North Bay fires in 2017. The order prohibits price increases of more than 10 percent until Dec. 31 in Butte, Los Angeles, Mendocino, Napa, Santa Barbara, Sonoma and Ventura Counties. It applies to rental housing, food, medical or emergency supplies, building materials, gasoline, and various repair services, according to the source.

The executive order follows Assembly Bill (AB) 1482, a rent-control bill Newsom signed in October that limits price hikes to 5 percent plus the local rate of inflation. That bill took effect on Jan. 1 and expires in 2030.

More than 250 price-gouging complaints were filed after the 2017 fires, the source reported. Sonoma County District Attorney Jill Ravitch issued a consumer alert in November to remind businesses that her office is still pursuing grievances.

Source:
The Press Democrat, California Governor Renews Protections From Price Gouging Put in Place After 2017 North Bay Wildfires

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