(KTXL) — Homeowners and business owners in the foothills and Sierra Nevada may be looking to hire someone to remove snow from their roofs, but county officials are warning people to not pay for illegally priced services.
– Video above: Cal OES provides update on storm emergency response
On Friday, both El Dorado and Placer counties issued public notices that under state law it is illegal for a person, contractor or business to sell their services at a price greater than 10 percent of what it was before a proclamation or declaration of emergency.
Penal Code 396(b) says, in part, Upon the proclamation of a state of emergency declared by the President of the United States or the Governor … for a period of 30 days following that proclamation or declaration, it is unlawful for a person, contractor, business, or other entity to sell or offer to sell any consumer food items or goods, goods or services used for emergency cleanup, emergency supplies, medical supplies, home heating oil, building materials, housing, transportation, freight, and storage services, or gasoline or other motor fuels for a price of more than 10 percent greater than the price charged by that person for those goods or services immediately prior to the proclamation or declaration of emergency, or prior to a date set in the proclamation or declaration.California Penal Code Section 396
Currently, 34 of California’s 58 counties are in a state of emergency due to the recent storms and as of Friday morning, 33 counties are under a presidential emergency declaration.
Placer County officials are stating that Lake Tahoe residents are receiving quotes of up to $20,000 for snow removal from their roofs.
Both Placer County and El Dorado County are included in the state and federal emergency declarations/proclamations.
Placer County is encouraging anyone who has been a victim of price gouging or has information about potential price gouging to contact the Attorney General’s Office at 800-952-5225.