Michigan lawmakers coming down on price-gougers amid coronavirus outbreak

Posted at 11:16 PM, Mar 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-18 23:38:28-04

CANTON, Mich. (WXYZ) — Michigan lawmakers are sending a stern message to people and companies who think it’s OK to price gouge and take advantage of people during this time of urgency and unknown.

On Wednesday, one man took a picture of someone selling boxes of toilet paper for $60 a box. Mike Arcuragi posted the picture on social media. The photo has been shared more than a thousand times. Arcuragi says people need to calm down and stop trying to take advantage of others.

"I actually drove around Tim Hortons to make sure what I saw was true," Arcuragi said. "I happen to look over and I see this big sign, '$60 for a case of toilet paper,'" he said.

The incident happened Wednesday in a Meijer parking lot in Canton. Attorney General Dana Nessel is laying down the law for people who think they can price gouge and get away with it.

"No one shall resell a product for a price that is grossly in excess in the price that they purchased the product," Nessel said.

The state's attorney general already sent a cease and desist letter to Menards after her office received 18 complaints from consumers alleging the store was price gouging on face masks, bleach and other supplies.

"No one shall sell any good material, emergency supplies to consumers more than 20 percent higher than they charged as of March 9, 2020," she said.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer backed what Nessel is doing to protect consumers.

"I want to thank the Attorney General Dana Nessel for her efforts to fight price gouging," Whitmer said. "To go after bad actors and to protect consumers."

Arcuragi says it’s ridiculous people are trying to take advantage of others in a time when people need to be helping one another.

"I just wish people would calm down and quit hoarding and lets live life, we’ll get over this," he said.

Arcuragi says police later showed up to that Meijer parking lot and put the sign back into the persons car. 7 Action News called Canton Police to see what happened to the person selling the products, but they would only tell us it happened on day shift.