Two Atlantic County hotel operators have settled with the state to reimburse customers who were "excessively and unjustifiably" charged for lodging immediately after Hurricane Sandy.
These are the first settlements to come from the state's investigation into claims of price gouging at hotels after the storm, according to a statement from the Attorney General's Office today.
Infant King Management, LLC, which owns the Howard Johnson Inn, 8029 Black Horse Pike, in West Atlantic City, will reimburse 59 customers a total of $1,183, as well as make a settlement payment of $28,817.
The settlement payment includes civil penalties, attorneys' fees and investigative costs. A suspended civil penalty of $5,000 will be automatically vacated after one year if there are no violations of the settlement terms, according to the statement.
A Classic Corp which owns the A-1 Motel, 616 West White Horse Pike in Cologne will reimburse 10 customers a total of $282, in addition to a settlement payment of $9,717.
A total of eight businesses, including hotels and gas stations, were a part of the settlement.
With these settlements and the first two price-gouging settlements announced in April, the Division of Consumer Affairs has assessed a total of $328,844.72 against companies, according to the statement.
Consumers who believe they have been cheated or scammed by a business, or suspect any other form of consumer abuse, can file a complaint with the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs at www.njconsumeraffairs.gov or by calling 973-504-6200.