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RESOLUTION AS INTRODUCED 2007-2008

SENATE RESOLUTION

State of Vermont

Senate Chamber

Montpelier, Vermont

Senate Resolution


     By Senators Starr, Ayer, Bartlett, Campbell, Carris, Collins, Condos, Coppenrath, Cummings, Doyle, Flanagan, Giard, Hartwell, Illuzzi, Kitchel, Kittell, Lyons, MacDonald, Maynard, Mazza, McCormack, Miller, Mullin, Nitka, Racine, Scott, Sears, Shumlin, Snelling and White,

     S.R. 32. Senate resolution requesting the Attorney General of Vermont to initiate legal action on behalf of the state and its citizens to seek reimbursement for the costs of illegal price-fixing, price-gouging, and conspiracy to restrain trade in retail gasoline and diesel fuel.

Whereas, all major international oil companies doing business in the state have reported record profits in the last several years; and many of them, such as  ExxonMobil, are among the most profitable companies in the world and  certainly the most profitable, publicly-traded companies in the United States, and

Whereas, the retail prices of gasoline, heating oil and diesel fuel constitute an economic emergency of the first order for the state and the people, demanding a decisive and immediate response from state and federal officials, and

Whereas, higher gasoline and fuel prices have extracted enormous costs on the state and its economy and have caused deep financial hardship for all Vermonters, and

Whereas, Vermont is a rural state with minimal public transportation, requiring thousands of individuals to drive their cars to work daily; Vermont’s economy is heavily reliant on automotive tourism and other recreation‑related activities; Vermont’s farmers are dependent on gasoline and diesel fuel to operate tractors, combines, trucks and other equipment necessary to sustain their livelihood; and home heating fuel costs are causing many Vermont  families to reduce other essentials, including food and health care, and

Whereas, the combination of record high prices and corporate profitability in combination with apparent market concentration at all levels of the industry must be investigated to determine if oil companies are engaging in illegal price-gouging, price-fixing, or other anti-competitive activities, now therefore be it

Resolved by the Senate:

That the Senate of the State of Vermont strongly recommends that the Attorney General of the State of Vermont take aggressive and immediate steps to initiate an investigation of probable illegal and anti-competitive activities by oil companies in violation of the laws of this State and the United States, and be it further

Resolved:  That the Attorney General of the State of Vermont initiate appropriate legal action on behalf of the state and its citizens, seeking reimbursement to the state and the people of the costs of illegal price-fixing, price-gouging, and conspiracy to restrain trade in retail gasoline and diesel fuel, and be it further

Resolved:  That the Attorney General of the State of Vermont seek the participation of the attorneys general of other states to join with Vermont in this investigation and legal action to recover the costs on behalf of their states and citizens, and be it further

Resolved: That the Secretary of the Senate is directed to send a copy of this resolution to the Attorney General of Vermont and to the Vermont Congressional delegation.


 



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us