By Eric Rosario
(Tamuning, Guam) Price gouging has been illegal since Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero's declaration of a public health emergency on March 14, 2020.
"It shall be an unfair trade practice for any merchant or landlord to increase the price of any goods, services, or dwelling rentals on the basis of shortage anticipated or caused by this public health emergency," the governor's Executive Order No. 2020-03 reads. Unfair, or deceptive, trade practices are punishable by fines and jail time on the part of those who commit the crime, according to the Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Act of Guam.
The Office of the Attorney General of Guam encourages people who believe a store is price gouging based on the price of a product or service to report the matter via email to them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is what they ask you include in your email:
The name of the store
The product: brand (ex: Clorox, Huggies, Tide), size (such as fluid oz, lbs, oz, etc), product type (ex: bleach, wipes, detergent, etc)
If possible: A picture of the product in the store, along with the price tag
The date you saw this product and its price at that store
A hypothetical example of a price-gouged product is a case of Crystal Clear bottled water (24 16.9 fluid oz. bottles), which retailed prior to the public health emergency between $5.99 and $10.99. If you happen to see this product being sold for, say, $16.56 a case, report it to the Office of the Attorney General at the email address provided in this story.
P.S. If you want to buy that particular product, it is on sale at Cost U Less Guam for $6.99; limited to two cases per customer.