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Brown signs Yamada consumer protection bill

SACRAMENTO – Assembly Bill 2251, authorizing county officials to respond to consumer complaints about improper California Redemption Value (CRV) charges, was signed by Gov. Brown last week.

Authored by Assemblymember Mariko Yamada (D-Davis), AB 2251 authorizes county agricultural commissioners and sealers of weights and measures, in coordination with the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle), to investigate and enforce penalties against retailers who improperly charge the CRV.

“Ambiguity over the authority to investigate complaints and weak enforcement mechanisms provided a loophole allowing some bad actors to overcharge CRV without regulatory oversight,” Assemblymember Yamada said. “Gov. Brown’s signature on AB 2251 protects consumers and also gives California’s unsung consumer protection heroes – our County Agricultural Commissioners and Sealers of Weights and Measures – another tool to ensure that the CRV charge you see on your store receipt is correct.”

Until 2010, CalRecycle referred all consumer complaints regarding CRV overcharges to county agricultural commissioners and sealers because of their statutory responsibility to investigate improper or illegal commodity pricing.

Because the CRV is considered a “surcharge” and not a “commodity,” existing law authorized complaint investigations, yet failed to define who held enforcement authority.

This minor distinction resulted in uninvestigated overcharges with little incentive for self-corrective action when improperly collected monies remained with retailers.

In the summer of 2010, a multi-county pricing and scanning investigation established that Sears and Kmart overcharged advertised prices and that Kmart specifically overcharged and added the CRV for containers not subject to the CRV. 

This investigation, led by county agricultural commissioners and district attorneys resulted in a $1.1M settlement against these two retailers.

AB 2251 clarifies and strengthens local investigative and enforcement authority and becomes effective Jan. 1, 2015.

Yamada represents the Fourth Assembly District which includes all or parts of Colusa, Lake, Napa, Solano, Sonoma and Yolo counties.

 

Clearlake Police works to update business emergency contact files

CLEARLAKE, Calif. – The Clearlake Police Department is in the process of updating its business emergency contact files within the city of Clearlake.

Clearlake Police volun...

Last Updated ( Monday, 29 September 2014 21:10 )

CDFA to initiate second round of funding for State Water Efficiency And Enhancement Program

SACRAMENTO – The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) will begin accepting applications on Sept. 29 for a second round of funding for the State Water Effi...

Last Updated ( Saturday, 27 September 2014 02:47 )

Controller announces unclaimed life insurance policy search

SACRAMENTO – State Controller John Chiang has announced a new search function – www.claimyourpolicy.sco.ca.gov – that allows the owners of unclaimed life insurance settleme...

Thompson introduces bipartisan 'OUTDOOR' act

U.S. Congressmen Mike Thompson (D-CA), Dave Reichert (R-WA), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Greg Walden, (R-OR), Jared Polis (D-CO), and Erik Paulsen (R-MN) on Thursday introduc...

California gets $22 million from USDA for conservation program

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that $328 million in conservation funding (more than $22 million to California) is being invested to help landowners protect a...

California surpasses 100,000 plug-in car sales; Californians buying 40 percent of nation’s plug-in cars

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – California sped past a major mile-marker this week – selling more than 100,000 plug-in cars since the market started in 2010, according to the Califo...

Yuba College to host food service industry open house

CLEARLAKE, Calif. – The culinary faculty and staff at Yuba College-Clear Lake Campus is hosting a food service industry open house on Tuesday, Sept. 23.

The open house wil...

Controller releases August 2014 cash update

SACRAMENTO – State Controller John Chiang on Tuesday released his monthly report covering California's cash balance, receipts and disbursements in August 2014.

Total reven...

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