ALBANY, N.Y. - Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced a new website for consumers to use if they become suspicious of price gouging at gas stations.
Cuomo says he has directed the Department of State and the Department of Agriculture and Markets to ensure consumers are protected against potential unfair practices at gasoline pumps as fuel costs rise across the nation.
Mac Brownson, the president of the New York State Association of Service Stations, was critical of its need.
"The spot market price in NYC dictates what my cost is going to be. I have to go up because my cost went up. If we're all going up equally than how could it be gouging?"
Furthermore, Brownson says there's no set definition for what gouging is.
"They've left it so vague that we can't interpret it and they won't tell us. They purposely leave it vague so they can interpret it when the want to."
The State's Division of Consumer Protection launched a toll-free hotline at (800) 214-4372 and website at http://www.dos.ny.gov/consumerprotection/consumer_resources/gas_gouging.html for New Yorkers to report sudden and unexpected increases in retail gas prices or concerns about improper delivery of quantity.
The website also includes tips to help consumers save money at the gas pump.
Average retail gasoline prices in New York State have increased over the past several weeks by $0.21/gallon, or 5.6 percent.
"When is it going to stop, when is it going to end?" said Tim Dyer of Albany.